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Columbia University
PET Scanning for Sarcoma Diagnosis and Management

Positron Emission Tomography, or PET, is a new technique for imaging tissues of the body. Unlike the CAT scan and the MRI, PET visualizes tissues that are actively metabolic, such as growing malignant tissues. PET scanning has therefore proven valuable in evaluating disturbances in the normal body anatomy (masses or lumps in the extremities, muscles, chest or abdomen) to help assess whether they are benign or malignant. It is of particular value in detecting local recurrences or tumor after surgical removal. It is also increasingly used, on an experimental basis to rapidly determine whether chemotherapy can inhibit metabolism and growth of sarcomas. The Kreitchman PET center facility at New York Presbyterian Hospital is well-equipped for these investigations, which have been incorporated into several of the clinical trials now underway for Sarcoma, and Mesothelioma.

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