Background: Whole-body integrated positron emission tomography / contrast-enhanced computed tomography (PET/CT) scan is increasingly used in cutaneous lymphomas. However, the value of PET/CT in the detection of cutaneous lesions in primary cutaneous B-cell lymphoma (PCBCL) has barely been investigated.
Objectives: To investigate the diagnostic accuracy of PET/CT in tracking cutaneous involvement in PCBCL.
Methods: A retrospective study was conducted on 35 consecutive patients diagnosed with cutaneous B-cell lymphoma according to the World Health Organization classification who were evaluated with PET/CT as the initial staging procedure before treatment.
Results: Thirty-five patients met the study criteria. In two patients extracutaneous disease was detected by PET/CT and CT and confirmed by biopsy. Of the 33 patients with PCBCL, 26 (79%) had small cell PCBCL (18 marginal-zone, 8 follicle-center lymphoma) and 7 (21%) had large cell PCBCL (3 follicle-center, 3 leg-type, 1 indeterminate). PET/CT detected skin lesions in 3 of 26 patients (12%) with small-cell PCBCL as compared to 6 of 7 patients with large-cell PCBLC (86%), a 7.4-fold detection risk (95% confidence interval, 2.4–22, P = 0.004). The PET-positive subgroup was characterized by larger lesion size (P < 0.001) and a higher Ki-67 proliferation index (P < 0.001).
Conclusions: The sensitivity of PET/CT for detecting cutaneous involvement of lymphomas is low for small-cell PCBCL but high for large-cell types, and thus may facilitate therapeutic strategies.