Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Nucl Med Commun. 2013 Nov;34(11):1090-6. doi: 10.1097/MNM.0b013e328364aa4b.

90Y microsphere therapy: does 90Y PET/CT imaging obviate the need for 90Y Bremsstrahlung SPECT/CT imaging?

Author information

  • 1Departments of aNuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging bRadiodiagnosis, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, India.



Transarterial radioembolization using Y microspheres is a novel therapeutic option for inoperable hepatic malignancies. As these spheres are radiolucent, real-time assessment of their distribution during the infusion process under fluoroscopic guidance is not possible. Bremsstrahlung radiations arising from 90Y have conventionally been used for imaging its biodistribution. Recent studies have proved that sources of 90Y also emit positrons, which can further be used for PET/computed tomography (CT) imaging. This study aimed to assess the feasibility of 90Y PET/CT imaging in evaluating microsphere distributions and to compare its findings with those of Bremsstrahlung imaging.


Thirty-five sessions of 90Y microsphere transarterial radioembolization were performed on 30 patients with hepatic malignancies. 90Y PET/CT imaging was performed within 3 h of therapy. Bremsstrahlung imaging was also performed for each patient. The imaging findings were compared for concordance in the distribution of microspheres.


Exact one-to-one correspondence between 90Y PET/CT imaging and 90Y Bremsstrahlung imaging was observed in 97.14% of cases (i.e. in 34/35 cases). Discordance was observed only in one case in which 90Y PET/CT imaging resolved the microsphere uptake in the inferior vena cava tumor thrombus, which was, however, not visualized on Bremsstrahlung imaging.


There is good concordance in the imaging findings of 90Y PET/CT and 90Y Bremsstrahlung imaging. 90Y PET/CT imaging scores over the conventionally used Bremsstrahlung imaging in terms of better resolution, ease of technique, and comparable image acquisition time. This makes it a preferred imaging modality for assessment of the distribution of 90Y microspheres.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk