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Dr. Salar
Dr. Salar, Doctor
Category: Medical
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Experience:  Diplomate American Board of Internal Medicine
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What does Hypermetabolic activity on a pet scan mean?

Resolved Question:

My pet scan report says there is hypermetabolic activity in an enlarged lymph node in the right upper anterior chest wall and slightly increased activity in subcarinal area with a lymph node which is upper normal in size. I am a breast cancer surviror having a mascectomy of the left breast. That was in 2005. Recently they discovered a melignant nodule in my upper left lung whcih I have been on chemo now for the last couple of months and which is decreasing. I need to know in "layman's" terms what is going on? What does it mean hypermetabolic activity? My doctor seems to skate around and not give me any straight answers other than to tell me I will have to be on and off chemo for the rest of my life.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Salar replied 6 years ago.

The pet scan look for tumor activity. Hypermetabolic state means that cancer is likely to be present in these lymph nodes as shown by increased uptake and that is why you would need chemo on an ongoing basis.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

My doctor is giving me gemcell which for all I've read is for ovarian cancer. If I am taking chemo why are these new lymph nodes becoming enlarged and can these lymph nodes be removed?

Expert:  Dr. Salar replied 6 years ago.

The cancer can spread even when chemo is use based on high aggressive it is and response to chemo. The lymph nodes will not be removed. Chemo will be given to reduce/ shrink the tumors.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

You said that it shows that cancer is likely to be present but could it be something else such as valley fever or phnumonia which would affect the lmpth nodes?

Expert:  Dr. Salar replied 6 years ago.

No. It is tumor until proven otherwise.

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