A multicenter prospective trial in the Netherlands has found that FDG-PET prevents unnecessary surgeries for one in six patients with metastatic colon cancer who undergo liver resection based on CT findings.
Dr. W.J.G. Oyen of Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center and colleagues enrolled 75 surgical candidates randomly selected for assessment with CT alone, the standard imaging for recommending surgery, and another 75 who were evaluated with CT and FDG-PET. All 75 patients in the CT group underwent laparotomy compared to 70 in the PET group. Overall, surgeries for 34 (45%) and 21 (28%) patients performed on the basis of CT or CT plus PET, respectively, were considered futile. Disease recurred within six months in almost a third of patients in the CT-only group. Oyen presented results at the 2008 SNM meeting in New Orleans.