Pet Scans – Dr. Harry Chugani

Dr. Chugani’s Research To date 19 PET studies have been performed. These include 13 FDG PET, 5 Flumazenil PET and 1 AMT PET. The studies using PET scans have not produced an understanding of the basic pathophysiology of AHC, however, something important has been learned. They have learned that with increasing age and number of attacks, these children show areas of damage on their scans, indicating a progressive process. Based on this observation they are suggesting that coenzyme Q-10 may be a useful “brain protection” agent to be used on all of these children. Co-Q-10 works to protect the brain against a small amount of damage with each attack. There are no known side effects and it is available at health food stores. MRS data has also been collected and is being analyzed for publication. It seems to indicate that the cerebellum may be an important site in the brain involved in AHC. The present goal of Dr. Chugani’s program is to perform AMT PET studies on AHC patients. Because of the relationship of serotonin to migraine, and the alleged relationship between AHC and family history of migraine, it is believed this is a rational avenue to pursue. The one AMT PET performed showed high levels of serotonin, however, medication made the data difficult to interpret. It is hoped that continued research studies using AMT PET scans can produce a better understand of serotonin in AHC and may lead to alternative treatment approaches. Dr. Chugani needs to see seven more patients for these studies in order to draw conclusions. If you are interested in participating or would like to discuss it further with him, call Dr. Chugani at 313-993-0000 or send an e-mail to Lynn Egan.

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