Thymic lesions in patients with myasthenia gravis: Characterization with thallium 201 scintigraphy

T. Higuchi, J. Taki, S. Kinuya, M. Yamada, M. Kawasuji, O. Matsui, A. Nonomura, H. Bunko, N. Tonami

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21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

PURPOSE: To assess thallium 201 (201Tl) single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) for evaluation of thymic lesions associated with myasthenia gravis (MG), including lymphoid follicular hyperplasia (LFH) and thymoma. MATERIALS AND METHODS: 201Tl SPECT and computed tomography (CT) were performed preoperatively in 46 patients with MG who had undergone thymectomy. SPECT was conducted 15 (early image) and 180 (delayed image) minutes after 201Tl injection. Results were visually assessed, and 201Tl uptake ratios (thymic lesion count density/lung count density) were measured for quantitative analysis. Uptake was analyzed among the normal thymus, LFH, and thymoma patient groups. RESULTS: Histopathologic results indicated a normal thymus, LFH, and thymoma in 19, 16, and 11 patients, respectively. Mean uptake ratios in the normal thymus, LFH, and thymoma were 0.96 (95% Cl: 0.90, 1.03), 1.14 (95% Cl: 1.04, 1.25), and 1.87 (95% Cl: 1.56, 2.25), respectively, on early images and 1.09 (95% Cl: 1.00, 1.18), 1.65 (95% Cl: 1.48, 1.85), and 2.03 (95% Cl: 1.65, 2.50), respectively, on delayed images. Thymoma showed more intense 201Tl accumulation than did the normal thymus (P < .001) and LFH (P < .001) on early images. Both thymoma (P < .001) and LFH (P < .001) displayed more intense uptake than did the normal thymus on delayed images. CONCLUSION: 201Tl SPECT can enable differentiation between normal thymus, LFH, and thymoma in patients with MG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-206
Number of pages6
JournalRadiology
Volume221
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2001
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Mediastinum, radionuclide studies, 675.12162
  • Myasthenia gravis
  • Thallium, radioactive
  • Thymus, CT, 675.1211
  • Thymus, neoplasms, 675.3154, 675.3155, 675.3169
  • Thymus, radionuclide studies, 675.12162

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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    Higuchi, T., Taki, J., Kinuya, S., Yamada, M., Kawasuji, M., Matsui, O., Nonomura, A., Bunko, H., & Tonami, N. (2001). Thymic lesions in patients with myasthenia gravis: Characterization with thallium 201 scintigraphy. Radiology, 221(1), 201-206. https://doi.org/10.1148/radiol.2211001047