Most positron emission tomography (PET) imaging studies in gynecologic cancer are performed using 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG). It contributes valuable information in primary staging of untreated advanced cervical cancer, in the post-treatment surveillance with unexplained tumor marker (such as squamous cell carcinoma antigen [SCC-Ag]) elevation or suspicious of recurrence, and restaging of potentially curable recurrent cervical cancer. Its value in early-stage resectable cervical cancer is questionable. In ovarian cancer, FDG-PET provides benefits for those with plateaued or increasing abnormal serum CA 125 (>35 U/mL), computed tomography and/or magnetic resonance imaging (CT-MRI) defined localized recurrence feasible for local destructive procedures (such as surgery, radiotherapy, or radiofrequency ablation), and clinically suspected recurrent or persistent cancer for which CT-guide biopsy cannot be performed. The role of FDG-PET in endometrial cancer is relatively less defined because of the lack of data in the literature. In our prospective study, FDG-PET coupled with MRI-CT may facilitate optimal management of endometrial cancer in well-selected cases. The clinical impact was positive in 29 (48.3%) of the 60 scans, 22.2% for primary staging, 73.1% for post-therapy surveillance, and 57.1% after salvage therapy, respectively. Scant studies have been reported in the management of vulvar cancer using FDG-PET. More data are needed. Gestational trophoblastic neoplasia is quite unique in biological behavior and clinical management. Our preliminary results suggest that FDG-PET is potentially useful in selected gestational trophoblastic neoplasia by providing a precise metastatic mapping of tumor extent upfront, monitoring response, and localizing viable tumors after chemotherapy. The evaluation of a diagnostic tool, such as PET, is usually via comparing the diagnostic efficacy (sensitivity, specificity, etc), by using a more sophisticated receiver operating curve method, or the proportion of treatment been modified. Evaluating PET by clinical benefit is specific to the individual tumor and an attractive new endpoint. (copyright) 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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