Prognostic relevance of 18-F FDG PET/CT in newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patients treated with up-front autologous transplantation

Elena Zamagni, Francesca Patriarca, Cristina Nanni, Beatrice Zannetti, Emanuela Englaro, Annalisa Pezzi, Paola Tacchetti, Silvia Buttignol, Giulia Perrone, Annamaria Brioli, Lucia Pantani, Carolina Terragna, Francesca Carobolante, Michele Baccarani, Renato Fanin, Stefano Fanti and Michele Cavo
This article has an Erratum 120(11):2349


We prospectively analyzed the prognostic relevance of positron emission tomography–computed tomography (PET/CT) at diagnosis, after thalidomide-dexamethasone (TD) induction therapy and double autotransplantation (ASCT) in 192 newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) patients. Presence at baseline of at least 3 focal lesions (FLs; 44% of cases), a standardized uptake value (SUV) > 4.2 (46%), and extramedullary disease (EMD; 6%) adversely affected 4-year estimates of progression-free survival (PFS; ≥ 3 FLs: 50%; SUV > 4.2: 43%; presence of EMD: 28%). SUV > 4.2 and EMD were also correlated with shorter overall survival (OS; 4-year rates: 77% and 66%, respectively). Persistence of SUV > 4.2 after TD induction was an early predictor for shorter PFS. Three months after ASCT, PET/CT was negative in 65% of patients whose 4-year rates of PFS and OS were superior to those of PET-positive patients (PFS: 66% and OS: 89%). In a multivariate analysis, both EMD and SUV > 4.2 at baseline and persistence of fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) uptake after ASCT were independent variables adversely affecting PFS. PET/CT involvement at diagnosis, after novel agent-based induction and subsequent ASCT is a reliable predictor of prognosis in MM patients. This study is registered at as NTC01341262.

  • Submitted June 16, 2011.
  • Accepted August 8, 2011.
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