Accurate imaging is crucial for lesion detection in abdominal organs, for the noninvasive characterization of focal and diffuse abnormalities, and for surgical planning. To accomplish these tasks, several imaging modalities such as multidetector computer tomography (MDCT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) are used for abdominal imaging, providing important morphological, functional or metabolic information. More recently, PET/MRI has been gaining attention due to the possibility of combining high-resolution imaging with metabolic imaging. PET/MRI is a novel hybrid imaging technology that in the near future might play a pivotal role in the clinical management of oncologic and inflammatory abdominopelvic diseases. Despite the still limited number of published clinical studies, PET/MRI has been proven to be at least equivalent to PET/CT and to standalone MRI in a variety of oncologic disease. Moreover, in selected and focused clinical studies, it has been proven to outperform current standard of care imaging, for example, in evaluating cholangiocarcinomas, liver metastases, untreated and treated rectal cancer. This has also had an impact on therapeuticmanagement in some studies. Therefore in some institutions, including those of the authors, PET/MRI is becoming the new standard imaging modality in staging treatment-naïve intrahepatic massforming cholangiocarcinomas and prior to complicated hepatic surgery.
- Positron emission tomography/magnetic resonance imaging