Applying standardized uptake values in gallium-67-citrate single-photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography studies and their correlation with blood test results in representative organs

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Abstract

Objectives

Recently, semiquantitative analysis using standardized uptake value (SUV) has been introduced in bone single-photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography (SPECT/CT). Our purposes were to apply SUV-based semiquantitative analytic method for gallium-67 (67Ga)-citrate SPECT/CT and to evaluate correlation between SUV of physiological uptake and blood test results in representative organs.

Methods

The accuracy of semiquantitative method was validated using an National Electrical Manufacturers Association body phantom study (radioactivity ratio of sphere : background=4 : 1). Thereafter, 59 patients (34 male and 25 female; mean age, 66.9 years) who had undergone 67Ga-citrate SPECT/CT were retrospectively enrolled in the study. A mean SUV of physiological uptake was calculated for the following organs: the lungs, right atrium, liver, kidneys, spleen, gluteal muscles, and bone marrow. The correlation between physiological uptakes and blood test results was evaluated using Pearson’s correlation coefficient.

Results

The phantom study revealed only 1% error between theoretical and actual SUVs in the background, suggesting the sufficient accuracy of scatter and attenuation corrections. However, a partial volume effect could not be overlooked, particularly in small spheres with a diameter of less than 28 mm. The highest mean SUV was observed in the liver (range: 0.44–4.64), followed by bone marrow (range: 0.33–3.60), spleen (range: 0.52–2.12), and kidneys (range: 0.42–1.45). There was no significant correlation between hepatic uptake and liver function, renal uptake and renal function, or bone marrow uptake and blood cell count (P>0.05).

Conclusion

The physiological uptake in 67Ga-citrate SPECT/CT can be represented as SUVs, which are not significantly correlated with corresponding blood test results.

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