Objective: Diagnostic whole body scan (pre-therapy scan) with either I-123 or I-131 (radioactive isotopes of iodine) is performed to assess the extent of thyroid cancer especially distant metastasis prior to administering the therapeutic dose of I-131. Our aim of the following study was to determine the utility of the diagnostic pre-therapy scan in the management of differentiated thyroid cancer. Materials and Methods: It was a case-control study carried out by retrospective chart review, of a randomly selected 100 patients with differentiated thyroid cancer who had followed in our community hospital over the course of 1 year. We collected data on multiple variables in the subjects - including age, gender, pre-operative size of the nodules, diagnosis, stage of the malignancy, size of the tumor, multifocality, lymphovascular invasion, dose of radioiodine used for remnant ablation, recurrence rates and persistence rates. Continuous variables were compared using the independent sample Mann-Whitney U-test whereas the Chi-square test was used for nominal variables. Results: The mean dose of radioactive iodine administered was 97.56 (±27.98) in the pre-therapy scan group and it was 97.23 (±32.40) in the control group. There was no difference between the two groups (P - 0.45). There was also no difference in the recurrence rates between the groups (P = 1.0). There was a trend toward a higher degree of persistent cancer in the group that had the pre-therapy scans (P - 0.086). Conclusion: Pre-therapy scan may not affect the dose of radio-iodine I-131 used for remnant ablation of differentiated thyroid cancer and does not influence the recurrence rates. This was especially true with respect to I-131 remnant ablation for low risk tumors.
- Differentiated thyroid cancer
- I-131 therapy
- pre-therapy scan
ASJC Scopus subject areas