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Head Neck. 2014 Mar;36(3):323-7. doi: 10.1002/hed.23296. Epub 2013 Jun 1.

Preoperative 18F-FDG PET/CT and high-risk HPV in patients with oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma.

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  • 1Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea.



To evaluate the association of (18)F-fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography ((18)F-FDG PET/CT) and high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) status and to establish the histologic correlates in oropharyngeal cancer (OPSCC).


The medical records of 78 patients who underwent (18)F-FDG PET/CT for OPSCC before surgery were reviewed.


The positive rate of high-risk HPV in situ hybridization was 36% (28 of 78). The maximum standardized uptake values (SUVmax ) of negativity for the high-risk HPV subtypes (10.29 ± 4.30) and positivity (6.69 ± 4.17) were found to be significantly different (p = .001). The SUVmax cutoff value for differentiating negativity for the high-risk HPV subtypes from positivity was 7.10, with the sensitivity of 78% and the specificity of 68%. A median SUVmax (using 7.10 as a cutoff) (p = .041) and high-risk HPV status (p = .040) were found to be associated with 5-year disease-specific survival (DSS).


Median (18)F-FDG PET/CT SUVmax cutoff values 7.10 or greater are associated with a high-risk HPV negativity in OPSCC patients.

Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc., A Wiley Company.


lymphatic metastasis; oropharynx; papillomaviridae; positron-emission tomography; squamous cell carcinoma

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