Predictive value of 18(F)-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography - computed tomography compared to postoperative pathological findings for patients with non-small-cell lung cancer

Jie Xue, Jinsong Zheng, Hongbo Guo, Xiaohui Wang, Anqin Han
Molecular and Clinical Oncology 2015, 3 (1): 109-114
This study was conducted to investigate the predictive value of (18)F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography-computed tomography ((18)F-FDG PET-CT) in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), compared to that of postoperative pathological findings, for T and N staging and the associations of the metabolic parameters of the primary tumor with histological type and differentiation. The preoperative contrast-enhanced CT and (18)F-FDG PET-CT and postoperative pathological findings of 112 NSCLC patients treated with lobectomy or pneumonectomy combined with systematic mediastinal lymphadenectomy were retrospectively reviewed. Compared to the postoperative pathological findings, the effect of contrast-enhanced CT and (18)F-FDG PET-CT on T and N staging were evaluated. The metabolic tumor volume (MTV) and maximum standardized uptake value (SUVmax) of the primary tumor were measured. The associations between these metabolic parameters and histological type and differentiation were also evaluated. The differences in the accuracy in overall staging and T staging between PET-CT and contrast-enhanced CT were significant (91.1 vs. 69.6%, P=0.000; and 92.9 vs. 76.8%, P=0.000, respectively). The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value and accuracy of regional lymph node metastasis detection were 91.7, 93.0, 86.5, 95.8 and 92.6%, respectively, with PET-CT; and 71.3, 77.2, 60.6, 84.5 and 75.2%, respectively, with contrast-enhanced CT. The SUVmax (7.29±1.83 vs. 5.91±1.65, t=4.15, P=0.000) and MTV (48.20±22.47 vs. 30.21±19.72 cm(3), t=4.48, P=0.000) were significantly higher for squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) compared to those for adenocarcinoma (AC). There was a positive correlation between the MTV and SUVmax of the primary tumor (Pearson's r=0.838, P=0.000). Significant differences were observed among differentiation subgroups in the SUVmax and MTV of the primary tumor for both SCC and AC. In conclusion, compared to the postoperative pathological findings, the predictive value of (18)F-FDG PET-CT for T and N staging in NSCLC was higher compared to that of contrast-enhanced CT. The FDG uptake of the primary tumor was associated with histological type and differentiation and the difference was statistically significant. Therefore, the SUVmax and MTV of the primary tumor may be valuable indices to partly predict the histological type and grade of differentiation of NSCLC.


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