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Evaluation of two-dimensional total bone uptake (2D-TBU) and bone scan index (BSI) extracted from active bone metastatic burden on the bone scintigraphy in patients with radium-223 treatment.

OBJECTIVE: Radium-223 is a first alpha-emitting radionuclide treatment for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) patients with bone metastases. Although the spread-based bone scan index (BSI) and novel index of the intensity-based two-dimensional total bone uptake (2D-TBU) from bone scintigraphy may provide useful input in radium-223 treatment, they have not been evaluated in detail yet. This study aimed to fill this gap by evaluating BSI and 2D-TBU in patients treated with radium-223.

METHODS: Twenty-seven Japanese patients with mCRPC treated with radium-223 were retrospectively analyzed. The patients were evaluated via blood tests and bone scans at baseline and 3 cycles intervals of treatment. BSI and 2D-TBU were analyzed via VSBONE BSI in terms of correlations, response to radium-223 treatment, association with treatment completion, and the Kaplan-Meier survival analysis was performed.

RESULTS: Nineteen patients (70.4%) completed six cycles of radium-223 treatment, whereas eight patients (29.6%) did not complete the treatment regimen. A significant difference in baseline BSI and 2D-TBU was observed between these groups of patients. Both BSI and 2D-TBU were highly correlated (r = 0.96, p < 0.001). Univariate analysis showed an association between radium-223 completion in median BSI and 2D-TBU values (p = 0.015) and completion percentage differences (91.7% vs. 45.5%; p = 0.027). The Kaplan-Meier product limit estimator showed that the median overall survival was 25.2 months (95% CI 14.0-33.6 months) in the completion group and 7.5 months (95% CI 3.3-14.2 months) in the without completion group (p < 0.001). The overall survival based on median cutoff levels showed a significant difference in 2D-TBU (p = 0.007), but not in BSI (p = 0.15).

CONCLUSIONS: The 2D-TBU may offer advantages over BSI in classifying patients towards radium-223 treatment based on the degree of progression of bone metastases. This study supports the importance of preliminary assessment of bone metastasis status using BSI and 2D-TBU extracted from VSBONE BSI for radium-223 treatment decisions.

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