Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: We aimed to evaluate the role of FDG PET/CT in the detection of extraaxillary regional nodal/distant metastasis in breast cancer patients and to assess the value of FDG PET/CT for detecting distant metastases in patient subgroups. Materials and methods: A total of 254 patients with breast cancer (248 female, 6 male) who underwent PET/CT for initial staging were enrolled. Patients were divided into four groups: Group 1 consisted of 154 patients diagnosed by tru-cut/core/FNAB, Group 2 comprised 32 patients diagnosed by excisional biopsy, Group 3 included 62 patients who had mastectomy-axillary lymph node dissection, and Group 4 consisted of 6 patients who had axillary lymph node metastasis diagnosed by excisional biopsy. Results: PET/CT detected distant metastasis in 76 of the 254 patients. Of these patients, 21.7% had bone/bone marrow metastasis, 7.1% had lung metastasis, 13% had mediastinal lymph node metastasis, 4.8% had liver metastasis, 9.8% had other organ/system metastasis, and 6% had other lymphadenopathies. According to T staging, the percentages of distant metastasis were as follows: 13.6% of the 66 T1 stage patients, 35.7% of the 129 T2 stage patients, 40% of the 20 T3 stage patients, and 33.3% of the 39 T4 stage patients. Conclusion: FDG-PET/CT led to a change in the stage of disease and the treatment approach in newly diagnosed breast cancer patients due to its superiority in detecting extraaxillary regional lymph node metastases and distant metastases.


FDG PET/CT, breast cancer, distant metastasis

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