FDG-PET/CT effective in bone metastases detection

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According to study results published in the August issue of Archives of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, positron emission tomography-computed tomography using fluorodeoxy-glucose F18 (FDG-PET/CT) provides early, accurate detection of bone metastases from head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, as reported by Reuters.

Brian Nussenbaum, MD, of Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Mo., and colleagues evaluated 13 head and neck squamous cell carcinoma patients with FDG-PET/CT findings suggestive of metastases. The data from these patients was compared to the data from 683 patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, who had undergone the imaging procedure during initial staging or restaging.

Reuters reported that all of the 13 patients lacked clinical symptoms of bone involvement and nine had serum alkaline phosphatase levels in the normal or minimally elevated range. In 12 patients, FDG-PET/CT identified a total of 27 bone lesions. At the time of metastasis identification, six of the patients had no other identifiable distant metastatic disease and two of these lacked disease at any other site. The results influenced a therapeutic decision for five patients.

The findings demonstrate “the utility of obtaining PET/CT imaging for radiographically restaging patients with head and neck carcinoma," Nussenbaum told Reuters.