Published online Mar 21, 2019. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v25.i11.1289
Peer-review started: January 24, 2019
First decision: February 21, 2019
Revised: February 25, 2019
Accepted: March 1, 2019
Article in press: March 1, 2019
Published online: March 21, 2019
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of major causes of cancer mortality worldwide. For decades, 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) has been widely used for staging, predicting prognosis, and detecting cancer recurrence in various types of malignant diseases. Due to low sensitivity of FDG PET for detecting intrahepatic HCC lesions, the clinical value of FDG PET in HCC patients has been limited. However, recent studies with diverse analytic methods have shown that FDG PET has promising role in aiding management of HCC patients. In this review, we will discuss the clinical role of FDG PET for staging, predicting prognosis, and evaluating treatment response in HCC. Further, we will focus on recent clinical studies regarding implication of volumetric FDG PET parameters, the significance of FDG uptake in HCC for selecting treatment and predicting treatment response, and the use of radiomics of FDG PET in HCC.
Core tip: Because of low sensitivity, clinical use of 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) has been limited in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, recent studies have shown clinical significance of FDG PET in various ways. The objective of this review is to provide an overview of the current literature regarding FDG PET in HCC and discuss emerging role of FDG PET in aiding management of HCC patients.