Routine work-up for transarterial radioembolization, based on clinical and laboratory parameters, sometimes fails, resulting in severe hepatotoxicity in up to 5% of patients. Quantitative assessment of the pretreatment liver function and its segmental distribution, using hepatobiliary scintigraphy may improve patient selection and treatment planning. A case series will be presented to illustrate the potential of this technique.
Hepatocellular carcinoma patients with cirrhosis (Child-Pugh A and B) underwent hepatobiliary scintigraphy pre- and 3 months post-radioembolization as part of a prospective study protocol, which was prematurely terminated because of limited accrual. Included patients were analysed together with their clinical, laboratory and treatment data.Results
Pretreatment-corrected 99mTc-mebrofenin liver uptake rates were marginal (1.8–3.0%/min/m2), despite acceptable clinical and laboratory parameters. Posttreatment liver functions seriously declined (corrected 99mTc-mebrofenin liver uptake rates: 0.6–2.4%/min/m2), resulting in lethal radioembolization-induced liver disease in two out of three patients.Conclusions
Hepatobiliary scintigraphy may be of added value during work-up for radioembolization, to estimate liver function reserve and its segmental distribution, especially in patients with underlying cirrhosis, for whom analysis of clinical and laboratory parameters may not be sufficient.
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