Localization of residual medullary thyroid cancer by thallium/technetium scintigraphy

G. B. Talpos, C. E. Jackson, J. W. Froelich, A. A. Kambouris, M. A. Block, A. H. Tashjian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Whole-body thallium/technetium subtraction scintiscans, with thallium 201 chloride and technetium 99m pertechnetate, were obtained on 10 patients with medullary thyroid cancer with postoperative elevations of serum calcitonin values. Seven patients had the hereditary variant of medullary thyroid cancer (the multiple endocrine neoplasia, type II syndrome) while three patients had the sporadic form. Negative scans were obtained on five patients with basal calcitonin levels less than 3 ng/ml (normal <0.35 ng/ml). Five other patients with elevated calcitonin levels (range 3.6 to 69.2 ng/ml; mean 28.3 ng/ml) had positive scans that have guided further surgical approaches. Serum calcitonin appears to remain the most sensitive indicator of residual medullary thyroid cancer while localization of this residual tumor tissue frequently can be obtained through thallium/technetium subtraction imaging in both the hereditary and sporadic forms of the disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1189-1196
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1985


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