Pilot study assessing 18F-fluorothymidine PET/CT in cervical and vaginal cancers before and after external beam radiation

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Abstract

Objective: The role of F-18-fluorothymidine (FLT) PET-CT imaging in the evaluation of gynecologic cancers has not been established. We sought to evaluate (FLT) PET-CT imaging in gynecologic cancers by comparing standard uptake values (SUVs) of FLT with F-18-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) PET in the primary tumor at diagnosis, and assess FLT uptake immediately following concurrent chemoradiotherapy (chemoRT). Methods: In this pilot study, patients treated for cervical (5) or vaginal (1) cancer underwent FLT-PET and FDG-PET scanning at diagnosis (FLT1 and FDG1). Five patients (4 cervical and 1 vaginal) also underwent FLT-PET within 1-3 weeks after chemoRT before brachytherapy (FLT2). Wilcoxon rank-sum test was used to compare the FLT1 and FDG1 parameters. Results: Median age at diagnosis was 61-years (range, 33-72). Cervical cancers were staged as IB2 (n = 1, 20%), IIB (n = 1, 20%), IIIB (n = 1, 20%) and IVA (n = 2, 40%) and the single vaginal cancer was staged IIIB. The most common histology was squamous cell carcinoma (n = 3, 50%) followed by adenocarcinoma (n = 2, 33%) and clear-cell adenosquamous carcinoma (n = 1, 17%). Median tumor SUVmax at diagnosis was 7.8 on FLT1-PET (3.9-14.2) versus 11.6 (5.9-23.2) on FDG1-PET (p = 0.15). Tumor SUVmax of FLT declined 54%-100% after chemoRT. Conclusion: The tumor SUV of FLT at diagnosis was lower than that of FDG-PET. FLT uptake was markedly decreased after chemoRT. Results indicate that there may not be a significant effect of inflammation on FLT uptake in gynecologic cancers. FLT may be a useful tool when assessing the effects of chemoRT on gynecologic malignancies and planning for postchemoRT brachytherapy treatments.

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Cho, L. P., Kim, C. K., & Viswanathan, A. N. (2015). Pilot study assessing 18F-fluorothymidine PET/CT in cervical and vaginal cancers before and after external beam radiation. Gynecologic Oncology Reports, 14, 34–37. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gore.2015.10.003

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