The application of positron emission tomography with 18F fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG-PET) has remarkably improved the management of cancer patients. However, some caution is necessary in the interpretation of FDG-PET images. Because of its low spatial resolution, it is difficult to identify the anatomical location of radiotracer uptake and to distinguish between normal physiological accumulation and pathological uptake. A novel combined PET/CT system has been developed that improves the capacity to correctly localize and interpret FDG uptake. Although only a few studies have been conducted on the potential role of PET/CT in the management of breast cancer patients, the advantage of this modality compared with PET alone should be relevant for application in the field of breast cancer. In this review, we describe the clinical impact of PET/CT on breast cancer diagnosis compared with PET alone with respect to disease restaging, treatment monitoring, preoperative staging and primary diagnosis. In addition, the possible role of PET/CT with iodine contrast is noted for evaluation of intra-ductal spreading.
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