Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Malignant brain tumors: Benefit of PET and PET/CT in the detection of recurrences is not assessable, study finds

Date:
January 19, 2011
Source:
Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care
Summary:
Malignant gliomas are fast-growing brain tumors with poor prospects of recovery depending on disease stage. Experts hope that the examination of patients by means of positron emission tomography (PET) is more helpful in the choice of the right treatment than other procedures. Researchers have now investigated the benefit of PET in the detection of recurrences. According to their report, no robust conclusions are possible on the advantages or disadvantages of PET.

Malignant gliomas are fast-growing brain tumours with poor prospects of recovery depending on disease stage. Experts hope that the examination of patients by means of positron emission tomography (PET) is more helpful in the choice of the right treatment than other procedures. In a final report the German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG) has now investigated the benefit of PET in the detection of recurrences. According to this report, no robust conclusions are possible on the advantages or disadvantages of PET.

Related Articles


The Institute investigated two research questions:

First question: Does PET as a single device or as a combination of PET and computer tomography (CT) in one device (PET/CT) contribute to patients with recurrence of glioma surviving longer or experiencing fewer complications caused by their disease or treatment? This question could not be answered by IQWiG, as no robust study was found in the literature allowing any conclusions on the patient-relevant (additional) benefit of this intervention.

The Institute also investigated a second question: Can recurrence of glioma after treatment be detected more accurately with PET or PET/CT than with other methods? Twelve studies on PET conducted over a period of two decades were identified; however, the results for this procedure differed so substantially between studies that no general answer could be provided. Not a single study on PET/CT was found.

This lack of good studies is regrettable. PET has been applied in studies investigating patients with brain tumours since the early eighties; there would have been enough time to conduct meaningful studies. IQWiG therefore advocates that these missing studies be conducted as quickly as possible. As gliomas are relatively rare, ideally several hospitals should cooperate on an international level in order to obtain robust data within a reasonable period of time.

How does PET work?

CT and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), also referred to as magnet resonance tomography (MRT), are procedures used to diagnose brain tumours. These devices can depict whole organs in a three-dimensional manner. If a patient with a brain tumour is treated with radiotherapy, it is often not possible to distinguish on images of the brain whether the visible residuals represent active cancer tissue or tissue residuals destroyed by radiation (radiation necroses).

PET is supposed to help solve this problem. For this purpose, patients are injected a contrast agent that emits weak and non-toxic radiation. As tumour tissue often has a more active metabolism than healthy or necrotic tissue, the radioactive contrast agent accumulates there. This "illuminating" tissue in the body can be measured by means of PET and blended into CT images, so that doctors can see the location and metabolic activity of any tissue abnormalities at the same time. In newer studies, PET and MRI are also combined.

Even if the PET examination provided more information, this would not necessarily mean that patients would benefit from it. The decisive question is whether PET or PET/CT improves the treatment of patients by, for example, helping doctors choose the best treatment for the individual patient.

Procedure of report production

IQWiG published the preliminary results in the form of the preliminary report in July 2010 and interested parties were invited to submit comments. When the comments stage ended, the preliminary report was revised and sent as a final report to the contracting agency, the Federal Joint Committee, in November 2010. The written comments are published in a separate document at the same time as the final report. The report was produced in collaboration with external experts.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care. "Malignant brain tumors: Benefit of PET and PET/CT in the detection of recurrences is not assessable, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 January 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110119120358.htm>.
Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care. (2011, January 19). Malignant brain tumors: Benefit of PET and PET/CT in the detection of recurrences is not assessable, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 28, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110119120358.htm
Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care. "Malignant brain tumors: Benefit of PET and PET/CT in the detection of recurrences is not assessable, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110119120358.htm (accessed March 28, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) — Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) — A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

AP (Mar. 27, 2015) — The White House on Friday announced a five-year plan to fight the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria amid fears that once-treatable germs could become deadly. (March 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) — In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins