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European journal of surgical oncology : the journal of the European Society of Surgical Oncology and the British Association of Surgical Oncology

Usefulness of F-18-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography to confirm suspected pancreatic cancer: a meta-analysis.


PMID 24755095

Abstract

Pancreatic cancer is among the five most lethal malignancies in the world. Unfortunately, many malignant tumors go undetected by the current primary diagnostic tools. (18)FDG-PET and (18)FDG-PET/CT might be useful to confirm suspected pancreatic cancer. A meta-analysis was performed using all major search engines. Methodological quality of included studies was assessed as well as quality of the PET-protocol. The following pooled estimates served as primary outcome measures: sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV) and accuracy. Thirty-five studies were included. Pooled estimates for (18)FDG-PET were: sensitivity 90%, specificity 76%, PPV 90%, NPV 76% and accuracy 86%. Pooled estimates for (18)FDG-PET/CT were: sensitivity 90%, specificity 76%, PPV 89%, NPV 78% and accuracy 86%. The pooled sensitivity and specificity for (18)FDG-PET to differentiate between pancreatic cancer and chronic pancreatitis were 90% and 84%, respectively. Both (18)FDG-PET and (18)FDG-PET/CT offer no benefit over the current primary diagnostic tools in diagnosing pancreatic cancer. However, the (18)FDG-PET/CT systems are still improving. We should investigate the sensitivity and specificity of these new systems while reevaluating the tradeoff between false positive and false negative results. Yet, (18)FDG-PET/CT may have a role in the staging of pancreatic cancer, in survival prediction, and may add to other diagnostic information, like histology.