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Proceedings Paper

EGFR-targeted fluorescence guided surgery in head and neck cancer (Conference Presentation)
Author(s): Jason M. Warram

Paper Abstract

Purpose: The current standard of care for advanced stage head and neck cancer is neck dissection with removal of relevant lymph nodes. However comprehensive cervical lymphadenectomy can be associated with significant morbidity and poor quality of life. This study evaluated the sensitivity and specificity of cetuximab-IRDye800CW to identify metastatic disease in patients with head and neck cancer. Experimental Design: Consenting patients scheduled for curative resection were enrolled in a clinical trial to evaluate the safety and specificity of cetuximab-IRDye800CW. Patients (n=12) received escalating doses of the study drug. Where indicated, cervical lymphadenectomy accompanied primary tumor resection, which occurred 3-7days following intravenous infusion of cetuximab-IRDye800CW. All 471 dissected lymph nodes were imaged with a closed-field, near-infrared imaging device during gross processing of the fresh specimens. Intraoperative imaging of exposed neck levels was performed with an open-field fluorescence-imaging device. Blinded assessments of the fluorescence data were compared to histopathology to calculate sensitivity, specificity, negative predictive value (NPV), and positive predictive value (PPV). Results: Of the 35 nodes diagnosed pathologically positive, 34 were correctly identified with fluorescence imaging, yielding a sensitivity of 97.2%. Of the 435 pathologically negative nodes, 401 were correctly assessed using fluorescence imaging, yielding a specificity of 92.7%. The NPV was determined to be 99.7%, and the PPV was 50.7%. When 37 fluorescently false-positive nodes were sectioned deeper (1mm) into their respective blocks, metastatic cancer was found in 8.1% of the re-cut nodal specimens, which altered staging in two of those cases. Conclusions: Fluorescence imaging of lymph nodes after systemic cetuximab-IRDye800CW had a high sensitivity and was able to identify additional positive nodes on deep sectioning, which suggests a role for this technology for accurate assessment of regional metastatic disease.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 August 2019
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Proc. SPIE 11070, 17th International Photodynamic Association World Congress, 110703V (14 August 2019);
Show Author Affiliations
Jason M. Warram, The Univ. of Alabama School of Medicine (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11070:
17th International Photodynamic Association World Congress
Tayyaba Hasan, Editor(s)

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