18F-FDG/PET may help to identify a subgroup of patients with T1-T2 breast cancer and 1-3 positive lymph nodes who are at a high risk of recurrence after mastectomy

Jee Suk Chang, Jeongshim Lee, Hyun Jung Kim, Kyung Hwan Kim, Mijin Yun, Seung Il Kim, Ki Chang Keum, Chang Ok Suh, Yong Bae Kim

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose The purpose of this study is to assess the utility of positron emission tomography (PET) for predicting recurrence among patients with T1-T2/N1 breast cancer who were treated with mastectomy. Materials and Methods Of 712 consecutive patients with T1-T2/N1 breast cancer treated during 2003-2012, 109 had undergone preoperative 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose/PET and were included. Metabolic (maximum standardized uptake value [SUVmax]), volumetric (metabolic tumor volume [MTV]), and combined (total lesion glycolysis [TLG]) indices were measured. The resulting values were analyzed and compared with clinical outcome. Results At the median follow-up of 46.7 months, the 3-year relapse-free survival (RFS) rate was 95.2%. SUVmax (area under curve, 0.824) was more useful than MTV or TLG as a means of identifying patients at high risk for any recurrence. In multivariate analysis, SUVmax remained an independent risk factor for RFS (p=0.006). Using the method of Contal and O'Quigley, a SUVmax threshold of 5.36 showed the best predictive performance. The PET-based highrisk group (≥ 5.36 in either breast or nodes) had more T1c-T2, high-grade, hormone-receptor negative, and invasive ductal carcinoma tumors than the low-risk group (< 5.36 in both breast and nodes). The prognosis was much worse when high SUVmax (≥ 5.36) was detected in nodes (p < 0.001). In the no-radiotherapy cohort, the PET-based high-risk group had increased risk of locoregional recurrence when compared to the low-risk group (p=0.037). Conclusion High SUVmax on preoperative PET showed association with elevated risk of locoregional recurrence and any recurrence. Pre-treatment PET may improve assessments of recurrence risk and clarify indications for post-mastectomy radiotherapy in this subset of patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)508-517
Number of pages10
JournalCancer Research and Treatment
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Apr 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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