FLUDEOXYGLUCOSE F 18 (Page 2 of 4)

2.7 Imaging Guidelines

  • Initiate imaging within 40 minutes following Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection administration.
  • Acquire static emission images 30 – 100 minutes from the time of injection.


Multiple-dose glass vial containing 0.74 — 11.1GBq (20 — 300 mCi/mL) of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection and 4.5 mg of sodium chloride in citrate buffer (approximately 29 mL volume) for intravenous administration.




5.1 Radiation Risks

Radiation-emitting products, including Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection, may increase the risk for cancer, especially in pediatric patients. Use the smallest dose necessary for imaging and ensure safe handling to protect the patient and health care worker [ see Dosage and Administration (2.5) ].

5.2 Blood Glucose Abnormalities

In the oncology and neurology setting, suboptimal imaging may occur in patients with inadequately regulated blood glucose levels. In these patients, consider medical therapy and laboratory testing to assure at least two days of normoglycemia prior to Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection administration.


Hypersensitivity reactions with pruritus, edema and rash have been reported in the post-marketing setting. Have emergency resuscitation equipment and personnel immediately available.


The possibility of interactions of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection with other drugs taken by patients undergoing PET imaging has not been studied.


8.1 Pregnancy

Pregnancy Category C

Animal reproduction studies have not been conducted with Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection. It is also not known whether Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman or can affect reproduction capacity. Consider alternative diagnostic tests in a pregnant woman; administer Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection only if clearly needed.

8.3 Nursing Mothers

It is not known whether Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection is excreted in human milk. Consider alternative diagnostic tests in women who are breast-feeding. Use alternatives to breast feeding (e.g., stored breast milk or infant formula) for at least 10 half-lives of radioactive decay, if Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection is administered to a woman who is breast-feeding.

8.4 Pediatric Use

The safety and effectiveness of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection in pediatric patients with epilepsy is established on the basis of studies in adult and pediatric patients. In pediatric patients with epilepsy, the recommended dose is 2.6 mCi. The optimal dose adjustment on the basis of body size or weight has not been determined. In the oncology or cardiology settings, the safety and effectiveness of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection have not been established in pediatric patients.


11.1 Chemical Characteristics

Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection is a positron emitting radiopharmaceutical that is used for diagnostic purposes in conjunction with positron emission tomography (PET) imaging. The active ingredient 2-deoxy-2-[ 18 F]fluoro-D-glucose has the molecular formula of C 6 H 11 18 FO 5 with a molecular weight of 181.26, and has the following chemical structure:

image of FDG

Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection is provided as a ready to use sterile, pyrogen free, clear, colorless citrate buffered solution. Each mL contains between 0.740 to 11.1GBq (20.0-300 mCi) of 2-deoxy-2-[ 18 F]fluoro-D-glucose at the EOS, 4.5 mg of sodium chloride in citrate buffer. The pH of the solution is between 4.5 and 7.5. The solution is packaged in a multiple-dose glass vial and does not contain any preservative.

11.2 Physical Characteristics

Fluorine F 18 decays by emitting positron to Oxygen O 18 (stable) and has a physical half-life of 109.7 minutes. The principal photons useful for imaging are the dual 511 keV “annihilation” gamma photons, that are produced and emitted simultaneously in opposite direction when the positron interacts with an electron (Table 2).

Table 2. Principal Radiation Emission Data for Fluorine F 18
Radiation/Emission % Per Disintegration Mean Energy
Positron(ß+) 96.73 249.8 keV
Gamma(±)* 193.46 511.0 keV

*Produced by positron annihilation

From: Kocher, D.C. Radioactive Decay Tables DOE/TIC-I 1026, 89 (1981)

The specific gamma ray constant (point source air kerma coefficient) for fluorine F 18 is 5.7 R/hr/mCi (1.35 x 10 -6 Gy/hr/kBq) at 1 cm. The half-value layer (HVL) for the 511 keV photons is 4 mm lead (Pb). The range of attenuation coefficients for this radionuclide as a function of lead shield thickness is shown in Table 3. For example, the interposition of an 8 mm thickness of Pb, with a coefficient of attenuation of 0.25, will decrease the external radiation by 75%.

Table 3. Radiation Attenuation of 511 keV Photons by lead (Pb) shielding
Shield thickness (Pb) mm Coefficient of attenuation
0 0.00
4 0.50
8 0.25
13 0.10
26 0.01
39 0.001
52 0.0001

For use in correcting for physical decay of this radionuclide, the fractions remaining at selected intervals after calibration are shown in Table 4.

Table 4. Physical Decay Chart for Fluorine F 18
Minutes Fraction Remaining
0* 1.000
15 0.909
30 0.826
60 0.683
110 0.500
220 0.250

*calibration time


12.1 Mechanism of Action

Fludeoxyglucose F 18 is a glucose analog that concentrates in cells that rely upon glucose as an energy source, or in cells whose dependence on glucose increases under pathophysiological conditions. Fludeoxyglucose F 18 is transported through the cell membrane by facilitative glucose transporter proteins and is phosphorylated within the cell to [ 18 F] FDG-6-phosphate by the enzyme hexokinase. Once phosphorylated it cannot exit until it is dephosphorylated by glucose-6-phosphatase. Therefore, within a given tissue or pathophysiological process, the retention and clearance of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 reflect a balance involving glucose transporter, hexokinase and glucose-6-phosphatase activities. When allowance is made for the kinetic differences between glucose and Fludeoxyglucose F 18 transport and phosphorylation (expressed as the ”lumped constant” ratio), Fludeoxyglucose F 18 is used to assess glucose metabolism.

In comparison to background activity of the specific organ or tissue type, regions of decreased or absent uptake of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 reflect the decrease or absence of glucose metabolism. Regions of increased uptake of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 reflect greater than normal rates of glucose metabolism.

12.2 Pharmacodynamics

Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection is rapidly distributed to all organs of the body after intravenous administration. After background clearance of Fludeoxyglucose F 18 Injection, optimal PET imaging is generally achieved between 30 to 40 minutes after administration.

In cancer, the cells are generally characterized by enhanced glucose metabolism partially due to (1) an increase in activity of glucose transporters, (2) an increased rate of phosphorylation activity, (3) a reduction of phosphatase activity or, (4) a dynamic alteration in the balance among all these processes. However, glucose metabolism of cancer as reflected by Fludeoxyglucose F 18 accumulation shows considerable variability. Depending on tumor type, stage, and location, Fludeoxyglucose F 18 accumulation may be increased, normal, or decreased. Also, inflammatory cells can have the same variability of uptake of Fludeoxyglucose F 18.

In the heart, under normal aerobic conditions, the myocardium meets the bulk of its energy requirements by oxidizing free fatty acids. Most of the exogenous glucose taken up by the myocyte is converted into glycogen. However, under ischemic conditions, the oxidation of free fatty acids decreases, exogenous glucose becomes the preferred myocardial substrate, glycolysis is stimulated, and glucose taken up by the myocyte is metabolized immediately instead of being converted into glycogen. Under these conditions, phosphorylated Fludeoxyglucose F 18 accumulates in the myocyte and can be detected with PET imaging.

In the brain, cells normally rely on aerobic metabolism. In epilepsy, the glucose metabolism varies. Generally, during a seizure, glucose metabolism increases. Interictally, the seizure focus tends to be hypometabolic.

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