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Increased F-18 FDG Uptake in the Right Auricle of a Displaced Heart: Potential Cause of a False-Positive Pathologic Mediastinal Node

Kim, Susanne, MD; Ding, You-Guang, MD; Krynyckyi, Borys R., MD; MacHac, Josef, MD; Kim, Chun K., MD

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A positron emission tomography (PET) imaging study was performed in a patient with a history of lung cancer. The scan demonstrated increased fluorine-18 fluorodeoxyglucose uptake in the right auricle of a displaced heart. This same finding was also present on a prior PET study performed at an outside facility at which time it was erroneously interpreted to represent a pathologic mediastinal lymph node. This normal variant, particularly in patients with distorted anatomy, should be kept in mind to avoid a false-positive interpretation and to prevent unnecessary additional diagnostic workup or intervention.

From the Division of Nuclear Medicine of the Department of Radiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY.

Received for publication April 13, 2004. Revision accepted August 16, 2004.

Reprints: Chun K. Kim, MD, Division of Nuclear Medicine, Box 1141, Mount Sinai Medical Center, One Gustave L. Levy Place, New York, NY 10029. E-mail:

© 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.