Role of positron emission tomography-computed tomography in endometrial cancer

Turk J Obstet Gynecol. 2017 Dec;14(4):203-209. doi: 10.4274/tjod.24572. Epub 2017 Dec 30.


Objective: The efficacy of preoperative 18F-fluoro-D-glucose (18F-FDG) positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET-CT) in endometrium cancer is controversial. We examined the efficacy of PET-CT and the association between maximum standardized uptake value (SUVmax) and prognostic factors in endometrial cancer.

Materials and methods: Thirty patients with endometrial cancer underwent preoperative 18F-FDG/PET-CT. The patients were treated with abdominal hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy, and bilateral systemic pelvic lymphadenectomy was planned for all patients; paraaortic lymphadenectomy was performed in patients with intermediate and high risk. Tumor histology, grade, depth of myometrial invasion, maximum tumor diameter, lymphovascular invasion, nodal status, and ovarian/adnexal metastases were recorded.

Results: The mean primary tumor diameter was reported smaller in PET-CT and the effect size of PET-CT was -0.60. The kappa value was 0.06 for myometrial invasion. Pelvic lymph node metastasis was reported in 22.2% of patients in PET-CT. However, 3.7% of patients had pelvic lymph node metastasis. The kappa value for pelvic lymph node metastasis was 0.23, and sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values were 100%, 80.7%, 16.6%, and 100%, respectively. Paraaortic lymph node metastasis in PET-CT was suspected in 10%. However, paraaortic lymph node metastasis was found in 6.7% in histopathologic analyses. The kappa value was 0.15. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of PET-CT for detecting paraaortic lymph node metastases were 100%, 93.7%, 66.6%, and 100%, respectively. Myometrial invasion and tumor diameter were the only important prognostic factors affecting SUVmax.

Conclusion: According to our results, PET-CT has a limited role and diagnostic efficacy in endometrial cancer. The indications of FDG/PET-CT in endometrium cancer should be studied further and revised.

Keywords: Endometrial cancer; diagnosis; maximum standardized uptake value; positron emission tomography; prognostic factors.