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Benefit of PET and PET/CT in ovarian cancer is not proven
Date:8/8/2012

Due to the lack of studies, there is currently no proof that patients with ovarian cancer can benefit from positron emission tomography (PET) alone or in combination with computed tomography (CT). As regards diagnostic accuracy, in certain cases, recurrences can be detected earlier and more accurately with PET or PET/CT than with conventional imaging techniques. This is the conclusion of the final report by the German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG) in Cologne that was published on 23 May 2012.

More reliable diagnosis is supposed to improve treatment

Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common malignant tumour in women. Every year 15.9 women in every 100,000 are diagnosed with the disease in Germany and it claims the lives of 8 in 100,000 women per year. Since the ovaries lie deep in the abdomen and an ovarian tumour normally causes no symptoms for a long time, it is often only discovered at a late stage.

Many experts hope that an investigation using PET or PET/CT alone or in combination with other methods would be better able to distinguish between benign and malignant tumours when ovarian cancer is suspected. It could also help classify cancerous tumours into the correct stage, make it easier to assess whether they respond to treatment and to show earlier and with greater certainty whether a recurrence or secondary tumour (metastasis) has occurred. This information should then enable patients to be given better treatment recommendations.

Benefit for patients is crucial

IQWiG therefore searched the international literature for studies investigating the effects of diagnosis using PET or PET/CT on health aspects of direct relevance to patients. For example, the results of this research - and an appropriately tailored treatment - could contribute to patients having better chances of survival, spare them unnecessary operations or other diagnostic procedures, or improve their qual
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Contact: Dr. Anna-Sabine Ernst
presse@iqwig.de
49-022-135-6850
Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care
Source:Eurekalert

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