Sacroiliac joint asymmetry regarding inflammation and bone turnover: Assessment by FDG and NaF PET/CT

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Radiology, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, PA, USA

2 Department of Nuclear Medicine, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark Institute of Clinical Research, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark


Objective(s): This study was undertaken to determine the role of computed tomography (CT)-based methodology to segment the SI joint and quantify the metabolic activity using positron emission tomography (PET). We measured tracer uptake in the right and left SI joints independently to look for differences between the two sides. Further, we correlated tracer uptake with BMI and studied the inter-observer variation with regard to estimated tracer uptake in the SI joints.
Methods: In this retrospective study, a total of 103 subjects (48 females, 55 males) from the CAMONA study database collected 2012-2016 at Odense University Hospital in Denmark were included. Mean age was 48±14.59 years, mean BMI was 26.68±4.31 kg/m2. The SI joints were segmented on fused PET/CT images using a 3D growing algorithm with adjustable upper and lower Hounsfield Units (HU) thresholds. The metabolic activities on the two sides were correlated with BMI.
Results: For FDG, we found a higher average SUVmean on the right side (right: 1.3±0.33, left: 1.13±0.30; P<0.0001). Similarly, for NaF, the uptake was higher on the right side (right: 5.9±1.29, left: 4.27±1.23; P<0.0001). Positive correlations were present between BMI and FDG uptake (P<0.01) as well as NaF uptake (P<0.01).
Conclusion: The PET-based molecular imaging probes along with the CT-based segmentation techniques revealed a significant difference in the metabolic activity between the two SI joints with higher inflammation and reactive bone formation on the right side. FDG and NaF uptakes correlated significantly and positively with BMI.


Main Subjects

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