Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Background: Assessment of metastatic involvement of the liver remains a diagnostic challenge. The objective of this study was to evaluate the potential role of FDG PET in the detection of liver metastases. Patients and methods: Sixty-four patients with malignancy and possible liver involvement were included. Liver metastases were present in 31 cases, demonstrated by histopathological analysis in 15 cases and by follow-up in 16 cases. The negative cases were confirmed by pathology in four cases, peroperative ultrasonography in 12 cases, and follow-up in 17 cases. Whole-body FDG PET was compared to CT (n = 53) and US (n = 43). Results: PET demonstrated a 97% sensitivity, an 88% specificity and a 92% accuracy, compared to 93%, 75% and 85%, respectively, for CT (P = NS). Concordant results were obtained in 44 of 64 patients (69%; 19 TP, 25 TN). PET provided new and accurate information in 15 of 64 patients (23.4%). PET demonstrated liver metastases in 11 patients in whom conventional methods yielded negative (two cases) or doubtful (nine cases) results. Four patients free of liver involvement were correctly staged with PET, while CT/US were equivocal. PET was erroneous in five of 64 cases (7.8%, four FP, one FN). Conclusions: FDG PET allows an accurate screening of liver involvement in patients with malignancy. Combined with CT, it provides additional diagnostic information that could directly affect the management of these patients.
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