Role PET Imaging in Response Assessment for Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC)
Present imaging modalities for primary liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma or HCC) have several shortcomings. One important shortcoming is the time delay between successful treatment and radiological confirmation of this response. Often it takes several months for anatomical changes to occur and to be appreciated on morphological imaging such as CT or MRI (shrinkage of tumor, absence of contrast enhancement). Functional imaging by means of Fluor-18 deoxyglucose or Fluor-18 Choline (positron emitters, PET-scan) might be an early indicator of response. This "early" information might help to tailor treatment. For instance, if no response is induced, an early switch in therapy can be planned. The present study investigates whether the routine PET-tracer (Fluor-18 deoxyglucose) and the experimental PET-tracer, Fluor-18 Choline help to predict response if a patient with inoperable primary liver cancer is treated (radionuclide therapy, biologicals).