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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 75-78

False-negative bone scan and choline PET/CT study in a case of prostate cancer: The pitfall of the small cell prostate carcinoma variant

1 Department of Nuclear Medicine and PET, Singapore General Hospital, Singapore
2 Department of Urology, Singapore General Hospital, Singapore
3 Department of Pathology, Singapore General Hospital, Singapore
4 Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Tan Tock Seng General Hospital, Singapore

Correspondence Address:
Ammad Al-Tamimi
Department of Nuclear Medicine and PET, Singapore General Hospital, 169608
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1450-1147.103422

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We present a rare variant of prostate carcinoma. The patient is a 45-year-old male with elevated prostate-specific antigen levels at screening. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed hyperenhancing lesions throughout the axial skeleton. The fluorine-18 fluorocholine (FCH) positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) scan showed no abnormal bone findings. Subsequently, a technetium-99 methydiphosphonate (Tc99m-MDP) bone scan was performed, with additional correlative single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)/CT imaging of the pelvis and the results were essentially normal. A percutaneous core biopsy of one of the bone lesions in L5 was performed and histology confirmed small cell (neuroendocrine) variant of prostate cancer. Our case illustrates a possible pitfall in molecular imaging of prostate carcinomas, whereby both bone scintigraphy and FCH PET/CT scans showed no definite bone lesions to correlate with marrow signal abnormalities seen on MR imaging. This highlights the need for caution in the diagnostic evaluation of prostate cancers with known small cell variants.

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