Send to

Choose Destination
Respirology. 2010 Nov;15(8):1179-84. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1843.2010.01793.x.

Occult nodal metastasis in patients with non-small cell lung cancer at clinical stage IA by PET/CT.

Author information

Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Kangnam-Gu, Seoul, South Korea.



The introduction of ¹⁸F-FDG PET/CT has enhanced the diagnostic accuracy of nodal staging for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We analysed risk factors for occult nodal metastasis in patients with clinical stage IA NSCLC as determined by ¹⁸F-FDG PET/CT.


Data for 147 patients diagnosed as clinical stage IA NSCLC by PET/CT from 2005 to 2007 were retrospectively reviewed. All study patients underwent ¹⁸F-FDG PET/CT for lung cancer staging. They also underwent cervical mediastinoscopy or systematic lymph node dissection.


Cervical mediastinoscopy was performed in 78 patients (53.1%), and N2 involvement was detected in 3.8% (3/78) of these patients. Thoracotomy with systematic lymph node dissection was done in 144 patients. Four patients (2.8%, 4/144) were diagnosed with N2 disease after systematic lymph node dissection. Total N2 involvement was 4.8% (7/147). As 9.5% (14/147) of study patients had N1 disease, 14.3% (21/147) of patients had occult nodal (N1 or N2) metastasis. In univariate analyses, larger tumour size and a higher primary tumour maximum standardized uptake value >7.3 (SUV(max)) were associated with occult nodal metastasis. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that a primary tumour SUV(max) >7.3 was an independent predictor of occult nodal metastasis (odds ratio: 7.574; P = 0.001).


Preoperative PET/CT scans contribute to reduce the frequency of occult nodal metastasis compared with those reported in the pre-PET/CT era. The higher SUV(max) in primary tumour was an independent predictor of occult nodal metastasis in patients with clinical stage IA NSCLC by PET/CT.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center