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Clin Oncol (R Coll Radiol). 2012 Apr;24(3):190-5. doi: 10.1016/j.clon.2011.11.001. Epub 2011 Dec 17.

18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography in the assessment of occult primary head and neck cancers--an audit and review of published studies.

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1
Paul Strickland Scanner Centre, Mount Vernon Hospital, Northwood, UK. wailupwong@gmail.com

Abstract

AIMS:

To assess the value of 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) in patients with squamous cell and undifferentiated cancer neck nodes and no primary site on conventional assessment.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Seventy-eight patients with neck nodal metastases from an unknown primary cancer were studied. PET/CT was carried out in all patients, 1h after FDG injection.

RESULTS:

Uptake suspicious of an occult primary cancer was found in 46/78 (59.0%) patients. Subsequent investigations confirmed a primary site in the base of the tongue in 14, pharyngeal palatine tonsil in 14, post cricoid in one, lung in one. PET/CT diagnosed primary cancers in 30/78 patients (38.5%); sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value: 30/30 (100.0%), 32/48 (66.7%), 30/46 (65.2%), 32/32 (100.0%), respectively. PET/CT detected additional disease in four patients: contralateral nodal disease in two, mediastinal nodal disease in one and liver metastases in one.

CONCLUSIONS:

FDG PET/CT is of value in the assessment of patients with occult head and neck primary cancers. However, false-positive results remain a limitation of the investigation.

PMID:
22183080
DOI:
10.1016/j.clon.2011.11.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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