Comparison of Intrahepatic and Pancreatic Perfusion on Fusion Images Using a Combined SPECT/CT System and Assessment of Efficacy of Combined Continuous Arterial Infusion and Systemic Chemotherapy in Advanced Pancreatic Carcinoma
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The purpose of this study was to compare intrahepatic and pancreatic perfusion on fusion images using a combined single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)/CT system and to evaluate the efficacy of combined continuous transcatheter arterial infusion (CTAI) and systemic chemotherapy in the treatment of advanced pancreatic carcinoma.
Materials and Methods
CTAI was performed in 33 patients (22 men, 11 women; age range, 35–77 years; mean age, 60 years) with stage IV pancreatic cancer with liver metastasis. The reservoir was transcutaneously implanted with the help of angiography. The systemic administration of gemcitabine was combined with the infusion of 5-fluorouracil via the reservoir. In all patients we obtained fusion images using a combined SPECT/CT system. Pancreatic perfusion on fusion images was classified as perfusion presence or as perfusion absent in the pancreatic cancer. Using WHO criteria we recorded the tumor response after 3 months on multislice helical CT scans. Treatment effects were evaluated based on the pancreatic cancer, liver metastasis, and factors such as intrahepatic and pancreatic perfusion on fusion images. For statistical analysis we used the chi-square test; survival was evaluated by the Kaplan Meier method (log-rank test).
On fusion images, pancreatic and intrahepatic perfusion was recorded as hot spot and as homogeneous distribution, respectively, in 18 patients (55%) and as cold spot and heterogeneous distribution, respectively, in 15 (45%). Patients with hot spot in the pancreatic tumor and homogeneous distribution in the liver manifested better treatment results (p < 0.05 and p < 0.01, respectively). Patients with hot spot both in the pancreatic cancer and in the liver survived longer than those with cold spot in the pancreatic cancer and heterogeneous distribution in the liver (median ± SD, 16.0 ± 3.7 vs. 8.0 ± 1.4 months; p < 0.05).
We conclude that in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer, CTAI with systemic chemotherapy appeared to be effective and may prolong their survival. The development of a reservoir port system allowing for the homogeneous distribution of anticancer drugs is necessary to improve the prognosis of patients with advanced pancreatic cancer.
KeywordsFusion image Pancreatic carcinoma Reservoir
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