European Radiology

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 23–32 | Cite as

Additional value of PET-CT in the staging of lung cancer: comparison with CT alone, PET alone and visual correlation of PET and CT

  • W. De WeverEmail author
  • S. Ceyssens
  • L. Mortelmans
  • S. Stroobants
  • G. Marchal
  • J. Bogaert
  • J. A. Verschakelen


Integrated positron emission tomography (PET) and computed tomography (CT) is a new imaging modality offering anatomic and metabolic information. The purpose was to evaluate retrospectively the accuracy of integrated PET-CT in the staging of a suggestive lung lesion, comparing this with the accuracy of CT alone, PET alone and visually correlated PET-CT. Fifty patients undergoing integrated PET-CT for staging of a suggestive lung lesion were studied. Their tumor, node, metastasis (TNM) statuses were determined with CT, PET, visually correlated PET-CT and integrated PET-CT. These TNM stages were compared with the surgical TNM status. Integrated PET-CT was the most accurate imaging technique in the assessment of the TNM status. Integrated PET-CT predicted correctly the T status, N status, M status and TNM status in, respectively, 86%, 80%, 98%, 70% versus 68%, 66%,88%, 46% with CT, 46%, 70%, 96%, 30% with PET and 72%, 68%, 96%, 54% with visually correlated PET-CT. T status and N status were overstaged, respectively, in 8% and 16% with integrated PET-CT, in 20% and 28% with CT, in 16% and 20% with PET, in 12% and 20% with visually correlated PET-CT and understaged in 6% and 4% with integrated PET-CT, versus 12% and 6% with CT, 38% and 10% with PET and 12% with visually correlated PET-CT. Integrated PET-CT improves the staging of lung cancer through a better anatomic localization and characterization of lesions and is superior to CT alone and PET alone. If this technique is not available, visual correlation of PET and CT can be a valuable alternative.


Integrated PET-CT Visually correlated PET-CT Lung cancer Staging 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. De Wever
    • 1
    Email author
  • S. Ceyssens
    • 2
  • L. Mortelmans
    • 2
  • S. Stroobants
    • 2
  • G. Marchal
    • 1
  • J. Bogaert
    • 1
  • J. A. Verschakelen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyUniversity Hospitals GasthuisbergLeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Department of Nuclear MedicineUniversity Hospitals GasthuisbergLeuvenBelgium

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