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Efficacy of Heparin Loading During an 18F-FDG PET/CT Examination to Search for Cardiac Sarcoidosis Activity

Ito, Kimiteru MD, PhD*; Morooka, Miyako MD, PhD; Okazaki, Osamu MD; Minaminoto, Ryogo MD, PhD; Kubota, Kazuo MD, PhD; Hiroe, Michiaki MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/RLU.0b013e318266cb25
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A 65-year-old woman with a complete atrioventricular block was diagnosed as having cardiac sarcoidosis. 18F-FDG PET/CT imaging without unfractionated heparin loading revealed systemic abnormal uptake indicating sarcoidosis. However, the cardiac lesions were vague because of the physiological FDG uptake. One month later, 18F-FDG PET/CT using heparin loading was performed to evaluate the lesion activity prior to the start of steroid administration. 18F-FDG PET/CT imaging with heparin loading showed the cardiac lesions more clearly and suppressed the FDG uptake in normal myocardium. Heparin loading during FDG PET/CT may be useful for detecting cardiac involvement in patients with cardiac sarcoidosis.

From the *Department of Radiology, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry; †Department of Radiology, National Center for Global Health and Medicine; and ‡Department of Cardiology, National Center for Global Health and Medicine, Tokyo, Japan.

Received for publication February 20, 2012; and revision accepted May 15, 2012.

Conflicts of interest and sources of funding: none declared.

Reprints: Kimiteru Ito, MD, PhD, Department of Radiology, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, 4-1-1 Ogawahigashi-cho, Kodaira, Tokyo, Japan. E-mail:

© 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.