- AIM: to determine whether the first three months after 131I ablation is too early to perform radioiodine diagnostic whole body scintigraphy (dxWBS) in differentiated thyroid carcinoma patients. PATIENTS, MATERIAL, METHODS: The files of 462 patients who were treated for DTC in our hospital were reviewed. All patients underwent surgical thyroidectomy. 146 patients had data available on a. a dxWBS which was performed less than four months (max 120 days) after 131I ablation with concurrent stimulated TSH stimulated thyroglobulin (Tg) measurement without further therapeutic measures between ablation and dxWBS and b. a second dxWBS or 131I therapy (rxWBS) within 1.5 years after ablation. RESULTS: A discordance between the initial and follow-up scan was found in 25/129 (19%) patients: of 54 patients with a positive initial dxWBS, scan results of a second dxWBS or rxWBS obtained with a suitable distance to the initial scan contradicted the initial one in 15 patients (27%). New lesions were discovered in 10/74 negative first dxWBS cases (14%). A discordance between the initial and follow-up stimulated Tg was found in 5/129 (4%) patients: 2/90 (2%) of patients with a negative stimulated Tg at initial dxWBS subsequently showed a positive results whereas 3/29 (10%) patients with an initially positive Tg showed a negative Tg level at the second procedure. CONCLUSION: Less than four months after 131I ablation is too early to perform radioiodine diagnostic whole body scintigraphy with concurrent TSH stimulated Tg measurement. The identification of the right, later, timepoint however requires further research.
- Differentiated thyroid cancer
- I-131 ablation
- treatment success
- diagnostic whole body scintigraphy