The clinical usefulness of 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET) to predict oncologic outcomes and PET-based radiotherapeutic considerations in locally advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma

Hong In Yoon, Kyung Hwan Kim, Jeongshim Lee, Yun Ho Roh, Mijin Yun, Byoung Chul Cho, Chang Geol Lee, Ki Chang Keum

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Purpose We investigated 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET)-derived parameters as prognostic indices for disease progression and survival in locally advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and the effect of high-dose radiotherapy for a subpopulation with PET-based poor prognoses. Materials and Methods Ninety-seven stage III and Iva-b NPC patients who underwent definitive treatment and PET were reviewed. For each primary, nodal, and whole tumor, maximum standardized uptake value, metabolic tumor volume, and total lesion glycolysis (TLG) were evaluated. Results Based on the C-index (0.666) and incremental area under the curve (0.669), the whole tumor TLG was the most useful predictor for progression-free survival (PFS); the whole tumor TLG cut-offvalue showing the best predictive performance was 322.7. In multivariate analysis, whole tumor TLG was a significant prognostic factor for PFS (hazard ratio [HR], 0.3; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.14 to 0.65; p=0.002) and OS (HR, 0.29; 95% CI, 0.11 to 0.79; p=0.02). Patients with low whole tumor TLG showed the higher 5-year PFS in the subgroup for only patients receiving intensity modulated radiotherapy (77.4% vs. 53.0%, p=0.01). In the subgroup of patients with high whole tumor TLG, patients receiving an EQD2 ≥ 70 Gy showed significantly greater complete remission rates (71.4% vs. 33.3%, p=0.03) and higher 5-year OS (74.7% vs. 19.6%, p=0.02). Conclusion Our findings demonstrated that whole tumor TLG could be an independent prognostic factor and high-dose radiotherapy could improve outcomes for NPC showing high whole tumor TLG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)928-941
Number of pages14
JournalCancer Research and Treatment
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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