FDG PET/CT predicts radiation pneumonitis in lung cancer


March 18, 2014 - A retrospective analysis determines that pre-treatment [18 F]-2-fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography (FDG PET/CT) image-derived parameters can predict radiation pneumonitis (RP) clinical symptoms in lung cancer patients.

Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) FDG PET/CT image.


The study retrospectively reviewed 100 non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who underwent FDG PET/CT imaging before initiation of radiotherapy (RT). Pneumonitis symptoms were evaluated using the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events version 4.0 (CTCAEv4) from the consensus of 5 clinicians. Using the cumulative distribution of pre-treatment standard uptake values (SUV) within the lungs, the 80th to 95th percentile SUV values (SUV80 to SUV95) were determined. The effect of pre-RT FDG uptake, dose, patient and treatment characteristics on pulmonary toxicity was studied using multiple logistic regression.

The study subjects were treated with 3D conformal RT (n = 23), intensity modulated RT (n = 64), and proton therapy (n = 13). Multiple logistic regression analysis demonstrated that elevated pre-RT lung FDG uptake on staging FDG PET was related to development of RP symptoms after RT.

The researchers concluded pretreatment pulmonary FDG uptake, as quantified by the SUV95, predicted symptoms of RP in this study. Elevation in this pre-treatment biomarker identifies a patient group at high risk for post-treatment symptomatic RP.

Source: Castillo RPham NAnsari S, et al. Pre-Radiotherapy FDG PET Predicts Radiation Pneumonitis in Lung Cancer. Radiat Oncol. 2014 Mar 13;9(1):74. [Epub ahead of print]

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March 18, 2014
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