Test Performance of Positron Emission Tomography and Computed Tomography for Mediastinal Staging in Patients with Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer: A Meta-Analysis

Michael K. Gould, Ware G. Kuschner, Chara E. Rydzak, Courtney C. Maclean, Anita N. Demas, Hidenobu Shigemitsu, Jo Kay Chan, Douglas K. Owens

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

556 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: To compare the diagnostic accuracy of computed tomography (CT) and positron emission tomography (PET) with 18-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) for mediastinal staging in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer and to determine whether test results are conditionally dependent (the sensitivity and specificity of FDG-PET depend on the presence or absence of enlarged mediastinal lymph nodes on CT). Data Sources: Computerized search of MEDLINE, EMBASE, BIOSIS, and CancerLit through March 2003 and reference lists of retrieved studies and review articles. Study Selection: Studies in any language that examined FDG-PET for mediastinal staging in patients with known or suspected non-small-cell lung cancer, enrolled at least 10 participants (including at least 5 participants with mediastinal metastasis), and provided enough data to permit calculation of sensitivity and specificity for identifying lymph node involvement. Data Extraction: One reviewer (of non-English-language studies) or 2 reviewers (of English-language studies) independently evaluated studies for inclusion, rated methodologic quality, and abstracted relevant data. Data Synthesis: Thirty-nine studies met inclusion criteria. Methodologic quality varied, but few aspects of study quality affected diagnostic accuracy. The authors constructed summary receiver-operating characteristic curves for CT and FDG-PET. Positron emission tomography with 18-fluorodeoxyglucose was more accurate than CT for identifying lymph node involvement (P < 0.001). For CT, median sensitivity and specificity were 61% (interquartile range, 50% to 71%) and 79% (interquartile range, 66% to 89%), respectively. For FDG-PET, median sensitivity and specificity were 85% (interquartile range, 67% to 91%) and 90% (interquartile range, 82% to 96%), respectively. Fourteen studies provided information about the conditional test performance of CT and FDG-PET. Positron emission tomography with 18-fluorodeoxyglucose was more sensitive but less specific when CT showed enlarged lymph nodes (median sensitivity, 100% [interquartile range, 90% to 100%]; median specificity, 78% [interquartile range, 68% to 100%]) than when CT showed no lymph node enlargement (median sensitivity, 82% [interquartile range, 65% to 100%]; median specificity, 93% [interquartile range, 92% to 100%]; P = 0.002). Conclusions: Positron emission tomography with 18-fluorodeoxyglucose is more accurate than CT for mediastinal staging. Positron emission tomography with 18-fluorodeoxyglucose is more sensitive but less specific when CT shows enlarged mediastinal lymph nodes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)879-892+I18
JournalAnnals of internal medicine
Volume139
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine

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