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Volume 20, Number 3, 2015

Effectiveness of PET/CT with 18F-fluorothymidine in the staging of patients with squamous cell head and neck carcinomas before radiotherapy

Radovan Vojtíšek, Jiří Ferda, Jindřich Fínek



The aim of our study was to compare the staging of the disease declared before anticancer treatment was begun with the staging that was found after the planning PET/CT scanning with 18F-FLT was performed.


PET/CT in radiotherapy planning of head and neck cancers can facilitate the contouring of the primary tumour and the definition of metastatic lymph nodes.

Materials and methods

Between November 2010 and November 2013, 26 patients suffering from head and neck carcinomas underwent planning PET/CT examination with 18F-FLT. We compared the staging of the disease and the treatment strategy declared before and after 18F-FLT-PET/CT was performed.


The findings from 18FLT-PET/CT led in 22 patients to a change of staging: in 19 patients it led to upstaging of the disease and in 3 patients it led to downstaging of the disease. In one patient, a secondary malignancy was found.


We have confirmed in this study that the use of 18F-FLT-PET/CT scanning in radiotherapy planning of squamous cell head and neck carcinomas has a great potential in the precise evaluation of disease staging and consequently in the precise determination of target volumes.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2015; 20(3) : 210-216

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