Negative remnant 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake predicts excellent response to radioactive iodine therapy in low- to intermediate-risk differentiated thyroid cancer patients who have undergone total thyroidectomy
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Negative 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake of the thyroid bed indicates the absence or a small volume of remnant thyroid tissue (RTT) after total thyroidectomy (TT). The aim of this study is to evaluate the predictive value of negative 99mTc-pertechnetate scintigraphy for excellent response (ER) to radioactive iodine therapy (RIT) in low- to intermediate-risk differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC) patients.
One-hundred and eighty-nine low- to intermediate-risk DTC patients who underwent TT, RIT with a single dose of 30 mCi and suppressive therapy with thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) from July 2015 to February 2016 in our hospital were retrospectively evaluated. 99mTc-pertechnetate thyroid scintigraphy was performed just before RIT and images were reported dichotomously as negative or positive. The response of patients was assessed for 23.2 ± 3.8 months after RIT and dichotomized as excellent response (ER) or non-excellent response (NER). 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake, age at diagnosis, gender, multifocality, T stage, N stage, preablative stimulated thyroglobulin (ps-Tg), and TSH were explored as potential predictors for ER.
80.68% (71/88) of patients with negative 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake achieved ER. When patients were evaluated according to different ps-Tg levels, we found that 94.83% (55/58) of patients with ps-Tg < 1 ng/ml and negative 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake achieved ER. Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that ps-Tg (P = 0.0001) and 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake (P = 0.0473) were independent predictors for ER.
In addition to ps-Tg, negative 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake is also a significant independent predictor for an excellent response in low- to intermediate-risk patients. It may be possible to omit RIT in patients with ps-Tg < 1 ng/ml and concurrent negative 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake.
KeywordsDifferentiated thyroid cancer Total thyroidectomy Negative 99mTc-pertechnetate uptake Excellent response Radioactive iodine therapy
This work was supported by the Research Young Researcher Fund of Science and the Technology Department of Jilin Province (Grant number: 20170520027JH).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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