FDG PET/CT in a Patient With Syphilis Suspected of Having Penile Cancer

Jakob Kristian Jakobsen*, Joanna Szumniak, Christina Stilling, Joan Fledelius, Kirsten Bouchelouche

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debateResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


A 58-year-old man with large penile wound and enlarged regional lymph node was suspected of having disseminated penile cancer. FDG PET/CT for primary staging showed high FDG uptake on penis and in several enlarged lymph nodes. However, biopsies revealed no signs of malignancy, but ulceration, inflammation, fibrosis, and spirochetes. Furthermore, Wassermann test was positive. The patient was then treated for syphilis. To our knowledge, this is the first report on FDG PET/CT in a patient suspected of having penile cancer that turned out to be syphilis. Thus, syphilis can be added to the list of benign pitfalls in FDG PET/CT.

Original languageEnglish
JournalClinical Nuclear Medicine
Issue number9
Pages (from-to)E621-E623
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022

Bibliographical note

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  • genital
  • lymph nodes
  • penile cancer
  • pitfalls
  • syphilis
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Male
  • Syphilis/complications
  • Lymphatic Metastasis/pathology
  • Positron Emission Tomography Computed Tomography
  • Penile Neoplasms/diagnostic imaging
  • Lymph Nodes/pathology
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Radiopharmaceuticals


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