What is the role of SPECT scanning in the workup of primary central nervous system lymphoma (PCNSL)?

Updated: Jan 19, 2018
  • Author: Tarakad S Ramachandran, MBBS, MBA, MPH, FAAN, FACP, FAHA, FRCP, FRCPC, FRS, LRCP, MRCP, MRCS; Chief Editor: Stephen A Berman, MD, PhD, MBA  more...
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Thallium-201 single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) scanning is appropriate in patients with AIDS to help distinguish between infectious processes and PCNSL. Patients with AIDS may have a cystic, ring-enhancing lesion with PCNSL instead of the homogeneously enhancing abnormalities seen in immunocompetent patients. The presence of single or multiple ring-enhancing lesions in patients with AIDS raises suspicion of toxoplasmosis, Nocardia asteroides infection, or neurosyphilis.

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