The accuracy of 68Ga-PSMA PET/CT in primary lymph node staging in high-risk prostate cancer

  • Can Öbek
  • Tünkut DoğancaEmail author
  • Emre Demirci
  • Meltem Ocak
  • Ali Rıza Kural
  • Asıf Yıldırım
  • Uğur Yücetaş
  • Çetin Demirdağ
  • Sarper M. Erdoğan
  • Levent Kabasakal
  • Members of Urooncology Association, Turkey
Original Article



To assess the diagnostic accuracy of 68Ga-PSMA PET in predicting lymph node (LN) metastases in primary N staging in high-risk and very high-risk nonmetastatic prostate cancer in comparison with morphological imaging.


This was a multicentre trial of the Society of Urologic Oncology in Turkey in conjunction with the Nuclear Medicine Department of Cerrahpasa School of Medicine, Istanbul University. Patients were accrued from eight centres. Patients with high-risk and very high-risk disease scheduled to undergo surgical treatment with extended LN dissection between July 2014 and October 2015 were included. Either MRI or CT was used for morphological imaging. PSMA PET/CT was performed and evaluated at a single centre. Sensitivity, specificity and accuracy were calculated for the detection of lymphatic metastases by PSMA PET/CT and morphological imaging. Kappa values were calculated to evaluate the correlation between the numbers of LN metastases detected by PSMA PET/CT and by histopathology.


Data on 51 eligible patients are presented. The sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of PSMA PET in detecting LN metastases in the primary setting were 53%, 86% and 76%, and increased to 67%, 88% and 81% in the subgroup with of patients with ≥15 LN removed. Kappa values for the correlation between imaging and pathology were 0.41 for PSMA PET and 0.18 for morphological imaging.


PSMA PET/CT is superior to morphological imaging for the detection of metastatic LNs in patients with primary prostate cancer. Surgical dissection remains the gold standard for precise lymphatic staging.


Prostate Cancer PSMA PET/CT Imaging Staging Lymph node 



This work was supported by the Scientific Research Projects Coordination Unit of Istanbul University, under project number 3264.

We acknowledge the contribution of Polat Türker, Erkan Erkan, Levent Türkeri, Çağ Çal and Haluk Akpınar in providing patients for the study.

Compliance with ethical standards


Dr. Levent Kabasakal has received a research grant from the Scientific Research Projects Coordination Unit of Istanbul University, under project number 3264.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in this study involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the principles of the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Can Öbek
    • 1
  • Tünkut Doğanca
    • 1
    Email author
  • Emre Demirci
    • 2
  • Meltem Ocak
    • 3
  • Ali Rıza Kural
    • 4
  • Asıf Yıldırım
    • 5
  • Uğur Yücetaş
    • 6
  • Çetin Demirdağ
    • 7
  • Sarper M. Erdoğan
    • 8
  • Levent Kabasakal
    • 9
  • Members of Urooncology Association, Turkey
  1. 1.Department of UrologyAcibadem Taksim HospitalIstanbulTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Nuclear MedicineSisli Etfal Training and Research HospitalIstanbulTurkey
  3. 3.Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmaceutical TechnologyIstanbul UniversityIstanbulTurkey
  4. 4.Department of UrologyAcibadem UniversityIstanbulTurkey
  5. 5.Department of UrologyIstanbul Medeniyet UniversityIstanbulTurkey
  6. 6.Department of UrologyIstanbul Training and Research HospitalIstanbulTurkey
  7. 7.Department of UrologyIstanbul University, Cerrahpasa School of MedicineIstanbulTurkey
  8. 8.Department of Public HealthIstanbul University, Cerrahpasa School of MedicineIstanbulTurkey
  9. 9.Department of Nuclear MedicineIstanbul University, Cerrahpasa School of MedicineIstanbulTurkey

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