Endoscopic and radiologic studies are frequently required in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) to determine disease activity, extent of disease, and delineating disease type.
Positron emission tomography using fluorine-18-fluoro-deoxyglucose to identify metabolically active tissues may offer a simple noninvasive alternative to conventional studies.
This method can be used in the identification and localization of active intestinal inflammation in children with IBD.
Dr Daniel Lemberg and colleagues assessed the value of positron emission tomography in identifying active intestinal inflammation.
The research team compared the results with conventional endoscopic and radiologic studies, including small bowel follow-through and colonoscopy.
The team enrolled 65 children in the study, while the analysis included 55 children with a mean age of 13 years, of which 37 were newly diagnosed with IBD.
The team reported that 18 children had symptoms suggestive of recurrent disease and 10 children presented with recurrent abdominal pain.
|Positron emission tomography correctly identified active inflammatory disease in 80% of children with IBD|
|Inflammatory Bowel Diseases|
The results were compared with small bowel follow-through with pneumocolon and/or colonoscopy.
The team noted that 38 patients had Crohn's disease, of which 17 had ileal, 12 ileocolic, 5 pancolonic, 3 left-sided disease, and 1 had right-sided disease.
The researchers observed that 17 had ulcerative colitis, of which 15 had pan-colitis, and 2 had left-sided colitis.
The mean time interval between positron emission tomography and other studies was 30 days.
The researchers found that positron emission tomography correctly identified active inflammatory disease in 80% of children with IBD.
This method also correctly showed no evidence of inflammation in children with recurrent abdominal pain.
Gluorine-18-fluoro-deoxyglucose accumulated at sites that corresponded with active disease at colonoscopy in 84% of patients.
In addition, the team noted gluorine-18-flouro-deoxyglucose accumulation at sites using colonoscopy in small bowel follow-through with pneumocolon 75% of the time.
Dr Lemberg's team comments, “This study suggests that positron emission tomography offers a noninvasive tool for identifying and localizing active intestinal inflammation in children with IBD.”
“Positron emission tomography may not be able to replace conventional studies; however, it may be useful when conventional studies cannot be performed or fail to be completed.”