Two Spleens revelaed on PET Scan of Lung Cancer Patient

Dear Ask The Doctor:  My twin sister recently had a PET scan to see if her cancer has spread and much to her amazement, was diagnosed having 2 (two) spleens! In terms of body functions what does that actually mean?

Dear Patient:  The spleen is an organ in the body that is part of the lymphatic system. It filters and removes old red blood cells from the bloodstream. It also has an important role in immune function. It can remove, store and produce white blood cells. It makes antibodies and filters and removes antibody-coated bacteria from the bloodstream. There is a wide variation in congenital anomalies of the spleen ranging from splenic lobulation to an accessory spleen. The majority of these anomalies are of no clinical significance. However it is important to correctly identify the presence of an extra lobe or accessory spleen on the scan, and therefore not mistake it for another abnormality.

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