Nucl Med Rev Cent East Eur. 2009;12(2):83-8.
Deparment of Nuclear Medicine, Medical University of Lodz, Central Clinical Hospital, Poland. [email protected]
Melanoma malignum belongs to the group of neoplasms with the highest lethality. Due to the continuous increase of incidence in numerous countries, this malignance has become a serious health problem. This highly aggressive neoplasm is a source of metastases to most organs and eo ipso of bad prognosis. Early detection of the primary tumour and of metastases creates a chance for optimal therapy. The methods of nuclear medicine are becoming more popular in diagnostics of melanomas because they offer advantages over traditional methods of anatomic imaging. Functional imaging, based on the use of modern radiopharmaceuticals frequently offers more successful identification and characterization of malignant neoplasms. Over the last few decades there have been numerous attempts to utilize, in the diagnostics of melanomas, a number of compounds labelled with radioactive nuclides. An accepted role in diagnosis of melanoma found a technique of lymphoscintigraphic mapping of lymphatic nodes and of detection of the sentinel node. In addition, modern positron emission tomography (PET) with use of (18)F-fluorodeoxyglucose has found acceptance in melanoma diagnostics. The present review refers to information on the presently used and potential new radiopharmaceuticals promising effective melanoma diagnostics.