HELP - PET/SCAN Result (is it cancer?)

Thu, 06/09/2022 - 16:15

Hello - I am scheduled for mitral value repair surgery in July and my cardiac surgeon ordered a neck-waist CT-Scan as part of pre-surgery evaluation. The CT-Scan showed enlarged hilar and mediastinal lymph nodes. My surgeon passed me on to pulmonologist who suggested a PET Scan, which was conducted today. I just got the results and did some online research myself, but am very anxious. I am meeting the pulmonologist Tuesday (5 days) but am very anxious and would love to know a bit more about the results beforehand. My wife was diagnosed with cervical cancer this year but is now cancer free after a succesful hysterectomy - but needless to say we are both very anxious and nervous. I dont have any symptoms outside of mild shortness of breath, more so tired quicker than anything major. For example, I dont have any issues walking up stairs or doing normal exercise (golf). My cardiac surgeon told me those symptoms are from my mitral value prolapse / regurgitation.

Anyway, the findings from my PET Scan are below ... any help is appreciated.


Mediastinal blood pool: max SUV 1.7
Liver: max SUV 2.1

HEAD AND NECK: Symmetrical nasal pharyngeal and oropharyngeal uptake likely
inflammatory. No hypermetabolic lymphadenopathy..

Postsurgical changes left mastoid with opacification of some remaining
mastoid air cells.

THORAX: There are multiple hypermetabolic mediastinal and hilar lymph nodes
for example: Conglomerate aorticopulmonary window 1.8 x 1.0 cm SUV max 8.7,
right hilum approximately 1.3 x 2.3 cm SUV max 9.7, left hilum 1 normal 4
cm SUV max 8.5.

There is hypermetabolic left upper lobe lung nodule 0.6 x 0.3 cm SUV max
2.8. This was not imaged on prior CTs.

There is a non-FDG avid left posterior lower lobe opacity which was present
3/28/2019 possible scarring or rounded atelectasis. Slightly different
appearance may be technical. Follow-up could be obtained.

ABDOMEN AND PELVIS: Normal physiologic FDG uptake.

MUSCULOSKELETAL: Normal physiologic FDG uptake.


1. Multiple hypermetabolic mediastinal and hilar lymph nodes nonspecific,
inflammatory or malignancy. The relative symmetrical distribution can often
be seen in inflammatory conditions such as sarcoidosis. Consider tissue
2. Hypermetabolic right upper lobe nodule versus intrapulmonary lymph node.
Close follow up.

JanineT Forum …

Hi Rick and welcome to Grace. I'm sorry you're going through this. Ethically or legally we can't comment on reports.
Cancer and infection look alike on film and they both cause higher than normal SUV values. And to be fair to your lymph nodes it's what they do, collect and dump infection.
And waiting can seem infuriatingly long and definitely stressful. Try to keep your mind occupied and add positive thoughts of infection and penicillin.
Don't hesitate to ask questions if you need us but I hope you don't.
All the best,

JanineT Forum …

I just saw this link on our fb page. Scanxiety is unfortunately real enough to have a term everyone knows.  Cancer or no (and I'm going for no) you can use this article about now, I think.


I completely understand about not being able to comment on reports, I appreciate the support and positive thinking. I am at peace now and am going to remain hopeful-positive until we are told differently, which hope does not happen. Like I said, I dont have any symptoms so hopefully this is just an infection of somesort that can be treated (if needed) with medicine.

I will also look over the FB link you sent as I 100% agree scan anxiety is a a real thing. Even though everyone tells you not to look online and self-diagnose results, its very hard when your life is on the line.