Localization of parathyroid disease with ‘sequential multiphase and dual-tracer’ technique and comparison with neck ultrasound

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The aim of the study was to evaluate the accuracy of the sequential multiphase and dual-tracer (SMADT) technique utilizing technetium-99m pertechnetate (99mTcO4) and dynamic technetium-99m-2-methoxyisobutylisonitrile (99mTc-MIBI) with single-photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography (SPECT/CT) for localization of hyperfunctioning parathyroid tissue and compare the results with ultrasound (US).

Materials and methods

Sixty-four patients with hyperparathyroidism were scanned over 4 years. For the SMADT technique, 80 MBq 99mTcO4 was injected with dynamic thyroid image acquisition started at 20 min, followed by 900 MBq 99mTc-MIBI injection at 30 min; the dynamic imaging continued for 50 min. SPECT was acquired at 60 min, with SPECT/CT of the neck at 3 h. Subsequent subtraction and statistical difference analyses were performed. Neck US was carried out within 3 months. Findings for each parathyroid gland and thyroid were classified as positive or negative. The patients underwent surgical resection of parathyroid tissue on the basis of imaging results. SMADT and US findings were correlated with histology as the gold standard.


Eighty-six histological samples were resected. The sensitivity of SMADT for localization to individual glands was 70.6% [95% confidence interval (CI)=58.1–80.7%] and that for neck US was 60.3% (95% CI=47.7–71.8%, P=0.26). Specificity was 94.4% (95% CI=70.6–99.7%) for SMADT and 72.2% (95% CI=46.4–89.2%) for neck US (P=0.13). Sensitivities in multigland disease were 63.6% (95% CI=31.6–87.6%) for SMADT and 36.4% (95% CI=12.4–68.4%) for US (P=0.37) and in nodular thyroid disease were 83.8% (95% CI=67.3–93.2%) and 66.7% (95% CI=48.9–80.9%), respectively (P=0.07).


SMADT results in better localization of varying parathyroid pathologies and complements the role of US in patients with multigland disease and nodular thyroid.

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