Ga-67 imaging has not been very successful in the detection of esophageal carcinoma. In most reports, sensitivity for the primary tumor ranged from 25-61%, but imaging had been done only in anterior and posterior (A-P) projections. We performed gallium scans in 30 patients with esophageal carcinoma, adding lateral views to the routine A-P projections, to study the effect of lateral views on tumor detection. The A-P views detected only 57% of the tumors while the right lateral visualized 89%, and the left lateral detected 100%. Some lesions may be hidden by the sternum and the spine in the routine A-P views. Previous disappointments with Ga-67 imaging of esophageal carcinoma were probably due to this technical factor. Being gallium-avid, esophageal tumors deserve further studies with this agent to determine the role of Ga-67 imaging in this condition. These studies should be performed with multiple views of the thorax or, better yet, with SPECT imaging of the chest, to circumvent the problem of sternum and spine interference.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging