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Primary finally found (Pet Scan)


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I am a former member who forgot her password and finally figured out a way of registering using my son's email address! I read here everyday and have been so bummed that I could not post.

I have so many questions for anyone that will help me.

My Mother's last PET scan came back on Monday. We finally found what I am guessing is her primary tumor. The PET report says "A ROUND AREA OF INTENSE INCREASED RADIOTRACER UPTAKE WITH AN SUV OF 15 IN THE ANTERIOR MEDIASTINUM AT THE LEVEL OF THE AORTIC ARCH"

Please, can someone tell me if this area is in her lung? What does a SUV of 15 mean? I have searched the internet for days and cannot find anything that tells me if an SUV of 15 is at the high end or low end for SUVS. Is there some sort of chart that tells where 15 would be on an SUV scale?

My mother's oncologist recommended hospice. He stated that nothing more can be done for her as she is very weak and has also had radiation to her chest for NSCLC 11 years ago.

My mother is very confused right now. She does not remember which day it is and is experiencing a lot of memory loss and coordination loss. She has really gone down hill for the past 2 months. I suspect more brain mets but a MRI in mid August showed nothing. A Ct scan in mid August showed no cancer in her body either. What, if no brain mets, could be causing her severe memory loss?

Thank you for any info or help you can give me.

Even though I have not been able to post, all of you have been in my prayers,


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The SUV is the standardized uptake value. If you search that you should find what a level 15 means. You should post your question in the Ask the Experts forum to get a professional answer. I believe our oncologist said he is concerned over any number higher than a 6.

I do remember your user name-- welcome back.

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My unprofessional opinion is they are talking about a lymph node in the center next to the aortic arch. An SUV of 15 is a very active tumor. My husband had high readings and I did the same kind of internet searching. Nobody says what the highest possible reading is and what it really means. Like Ry said, anything over a 6 is considered aggressive.

I'm sorry you have to go through all of this uncertainty and lack of understanding as to what is happening.

Charlie was able to get IMRT radiation to a very similar tumor in that same area after having had full chest radiation previously. Don't know if that would be an option or not. Perhaps you need another professional opinion. Praying for your Mother to improve and for you to have some answers. Take care. Glad you are back posting.

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I'm of no help whatsoever when it comes to the medical terminology but I would like to welcome you back to the board and let you know that I will be saying prayers for you and your mom. Please let us know how she is doing.

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I'm a nurse, but all I can tell you--is any tumor involving an area near the aorta is not promising.But every case is different and individual. Maybe the time for hospice is now, but that is for you and your family to decide. Just make your priority your mother's comfort. I am so sorry for your news. But, hospice works wonder, and they did so with my husband. They are experts at helping out at the end of life stages, and great support for the family. God bless you and your family. your are in my prayers. Nancy C

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