A Randomised Controlled Trial Assessing the Effect of Oral Diazepam on F-18-FDG Uptake in the Neck and Upper Chest Region

M.G.G. Sturkenboom, O.S. Hoekstra, E.J. Postema, J.M. Zijlstra-Baalbergen, J. Berkhof, E.J.F. Franssen

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A distinctive pattern of physiological symmetrical uptake of F-18-fluorodeoxyglucose (F-18-FDG) in the neck and upper chest region is a phenomenon that is sometimes observed on positron emission tomography (PET) scans of some oncologic patients. Initially, it was assumed to be muscle uptake secondary to patient anxiety or tension, which could be prevented by diazepam treatment. However, PET-computed tomography data have shown that F-18-FDG uptake is not restricted to the musculature but is also localised within the non-muscular soft tissue, such as brown adipose tissue. The efficacy of benzodiazepine treatment to reduce this uptake has not been well established. Therefore, a randomised controlled trial was conducted to decide whether diazepam would decrease physiological F-18-FDG uptake in the neck and upper chest region (FDG-NUC). A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted to assess the effect on FDG-NUC of 5 mg diazepam, given orally 1 h before F-18-FDG injection. Patients younger than 40 years, having or suspected to have a malignancy, were eligible for inclusion. The primary endpoint was FDG-NUC, as assessed by visual analysis of whole-body PET scans by two independent observers. The secondary endpoint was clinical relevance of FDG-NUC. Fifty-two patients were included between September 2003 and January 2005. Twenty-eight patients (54%) received placebo; 24 (46%) received diazepam. FDG-NUC was seen in 25% of the patients in the diazepam group versus 29% in the placebo group. This difference was not statistically significant. No beneficial effect of administration of diazepam could be established. Pre-medication with benzodiazepines to diminish physiological uptake of F-18-FDG in the neck and upper chest region is not indicated
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)364-368
JournalMolecular Imaging and Biology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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