Dual‐tracer scintigraphy and subtraction studies in the diagnosis of hepatocellular carcinoma

Samuel Sostre, Daniel Villagra, Nelly E. Morales, Julio V. Rivera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Dual tracer scintigraphy (DTS) (technetium 99m [99mTc] sulfur colloid and gallium 67 citrate [67gallium citrate]) of the liver and computer subtraction studies (SS) were performed in 26 patients subsequently proven to have hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and 32 patients with cirrhosis and focal defects on the colloid scan, with no evidence for HCC after a complete evaluation and a 2‐year follow‐up period. Both DTS and SS had a sensitivity of 96% and a specificity of 90.6% for HCC. There were three false positive cases (9.4%), two of which were occult abscesses. The predictive value of a positive test was 89% and that of a negative test was 97%. The smallest tumor detected measured 2 cm in diameter and was only visualized with the SS. In the clinical setting, when HCC is suspected (a situation in which tumors are usually larger than 2 cm and the pretest probability of disease is between 20% and 60%) the DTS and SS is an excellent test for the diagnosis or exclusion of HCC. It does not appear to have a role in screening programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)667-672
Number of pages6
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 15 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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