Evaluation of the delivered activity of yttrium-90 resin microspheres using sterile water and 5 % glucose during administration

EJNMMI Res. 2015 Dec;5(1):54. doi: 10.1186/s13550-015-0133-z. Epub 2015 Oct 13.


Background: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the impact of switching from sterile water to 5 % glucose (G5W) for the administration of yttrium-90 ((90)Y)-resin microspheres on the total activity of (90)Y administered (expressed as a proportion of the prescribed/calculated activity), as well as the number of cases of stasis and the reported incidence of discomfort during the selective internal radiation therapy (SIRT) procedure.

Methods: In December 2013, we switched from sterile water to G5W for the administration of SIRT using (90)Y resin microspheres in all patients. This retrospective observational single-center case series describes our experience in the months preceding and after the switch. Apart from the change in administration medium, the protocol for SIRT was otherwise identical.

Results: One hundred and four SIRT procedures were performed on 78 patients (45 male, mean age: 63 years, range: 31-87 years) with either unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma, cholangiocarcinoma, or chemorefractory liver-dominant metastatic cancer. Compared with sterile water, the whole prescribed activity was administered in significantly more procedures with G5W: 85 vs. 22 %; p < 0.0001. A significantly higher proportion of the calculated activity was administered with G5W: 96.1 ± 11.0 % vs. 77.4 ± 24.3 % (p < 0.0001). G5W procedures were also associated with a significantly lower incidence of stasis (28 vs. 11 % procedures; p = 0.02) and mild-to-moderate upper abdominal pain during the procedure (1.8 vs. 44 % procedures; p < 0.0001).

Conclusions: Replacing sterile water with isotonic G5W during administration favorably impacts on the safety of SIRT, eliminates and/or minimizes flow reductions and stasis/reflux during administration of (90)Y resin microspheres, improves percentage activity delivered, and reduces peri-procedural pain.

Keywords: Backflow; Glucose 5 %; Radioembolization; Resin microspheres; SIR-Spheres; Stasis; Yttrium-90.