Purpose: Fluorine-18 flurodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) imaging has rapidly become the standard of care for staging patients with lung cancer. We evaluated the prognostic value of metabolic tumor volume (MTV), a measure of tumor burden on FDG-PET imaging, in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated definitively.
Methods and materials: A retrospective review identified 61 patients with NSCLC who underwent FDG-PET imaging for pretreatment staging. Metabolically active tumor regions were segmented on the PET scans semiautomatically to calculate the total body MTV. We determined the relationship of overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) with MTV in the entire cohort, and in the subgroup treated definitively.
Results: The estimated median PFS and OS for the entire cohort were 11.1 months and 18.9 months. Higher MTV was significantly associated with worse OS (P = 0.00075) and PFS (P = 0.00077). For definitively treated patients, when MTV was analyzed as a binary value above or below the median value, 2-year PFS was 60% versus 39.7% (median PFS 34.9 vs. 11.9 months) and 2-year OS was 79.7% versus 33.3% (median OS 41.9 vs. 18.9 months), respectively (log-rank P = 0.12 for PFS and P = 0.066 for OS). When MTV was analyzed as a continuous variable, multivariate Cox proportional hazards analysis demonstrated a trend to worse PFS (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.31; P = 0.12) and significantly worse OS (HR = 1.53; P = 0.018) with increasing MTV after controlling for known prognostic variables.
Conclusion: Tumor burden as assessed by MTV yields prognostic information on survival beyond that of established prognostic factors in patients with NSCLC treated definitively.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.