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Open access

Kranti Khadilkar, Vijaya Sarathi, Rajeev Kasaliwal, Reshma Pandit, Manjunath Goroshi, Gaurav Malhotra, Abhay Dalvi, Ganesh Bakshi, Anil Bhansali, Rajesh Rajput, Vyankatesh Shivane, Anurag Lila, Tushar Bandgar and Nalini S Shah

Background and aims

Malignant transformation of pheochromocytomas/paragangliomas (PCC/PGL) is a rare occurrence, and predictive factors for the same are not well understood. This study aims to identify the predictors of malignancy in patients with PCC/PGL.

Materials and methods

We performed a retrospective analysis of 142 patients with either PCC or PGL registered at our institute between 2000 and 2015. Records were evaluated for clinical parameters like age, gender, familial/syndromic presentation, symptomatic presentation, biochemistry, size, number and location of tumours and presence of metastases and mode of its diagnosis.


Twenty patients were found to have metastases; 13 had metastases at diagnosis and seven during follow-up. Metastases were detected by radiology (CT-neck to pelvis) in 11/20 patients (5/13 synchronous and 6/7 metachronous), 131I-metaiodobenzylguanidine in five (2/12 synchronous and 3/6 metachronous) patients and 18F-flurodeoxyglucose PET/CT in 15 (12/12 synchronous and 3/3 metachronous) patients. Malignant tumours were significantly larger than benign tumours (8.3 ± 4.1 cm, range: 3–22 cm vs 5.7 ± 2.3 cm, range: 2–14 cm, P = 0.0001) and less frequently metanephrine secreting. On linear regression analysis, tumour size and lack of metanephrine secretion were the independent predictors of malignancy.


Patients with primary tumour size >5.7 cm and lack of metanephrine secretory status should be evaluated for possible malignancy not only at diagnosis but also in the postoperative period. As compared to CT and 131I-MIBG scan, 18F-flurodeoxyglucose PET/CT analyses are better (sensitivity: 100%) for the diagnosis of metastases in our study.

Open access

Majunath R Goroshi, Swati S Jadhav, Anurag R Lila, Rajeev Kasaliwal, Shruti Khare, Chaitanya G Yerawar, Priya Hira, Uday Phadke, Hina Shah, Vikram R Lele, Gaurav Malhotra, Tushar Bandgar and Nalini S Shah


Localising ectopic adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH) syndrome (EAS) tumour source is challenging. Somatostatin receptor-based PET imaging has shown promising results, but the data is limited to case reports and small case series. We reviewed here the performance of 68Ga-DOTANOC positron emission tomography (PET)/computed tomography (CT) and contrast-enhanced CT (CECT) in our cohort of 12 consecutive EAS patients.

Materials and methods

Retrospective data analysis of 12 consecutive patients of EAS presenting to a single tertiary care centre in a period between January 2013 and December 2014 was done. CECT and 68Ga-DOTANOC PET/CT were reported (blinded) by an experienced radiologist and a nuclear medicine physician, respectively. The performance of CECT and 68Ga-DOTANOC PET/CT was compared.


Tumours could be localised in 11 out of 12 patients at initial presentation (overt cases), whereas in one patient, tumour remained occult. Thirteen lesions were identified in 11 patients as EAS source (true positives). CECT localised 12 out of these 13 lesions (sensitivity 92.3%) and identified five false-positive lesions (positive predictive value (PPV) 70.5%). Compared with false-positive lesions, true-positive lesions had greater mean contrast enhancement at 60s (33.2 vs 5.6 Hounsfield units (HU)). 68Ga-DOTANOC PET/CT was able to identify 9 out of 13 lesions (sensitivity 69.2%) and reported no false-positive lesions (PPV 100%).


CECT remains the first-line investigation in localisation of EAS. The contrast enhancement pattern on CECT can further aid in characterisation of the lesions. 68Ga-DOTANOC PET/CT can be added to CECT, to enhance positive prediction of the suggestive lesions.