A hybrid radioactive and fluorescence approach is more than the sum of its parts; outcome of a phase II randomized sentinel node trial in prostate cancer patients.



Image-guided surgery strategies can help visualize individual lymphatic drainage patterns and sentinel lymph nodes (SLNs) in PCa patients. For lymphatic mapping radioactive, fluorescent and hybrid tracers are being clinically exploited. In this prospective randomized phase II trial, we made a head-to-head comparison between ICG-99mTc-nanocolloid (hybrid group) and 99mTc-nanocolloid and subsequent free-ICG injection (sequential group).


The total number of surgically removed (S)LN packages was 701 and 733 in the hybrid and sequential groups, respectively (p = 0.727). The total number of fluorescent LNs retrieved was 310 and 665 nodes in the hybrid and sequential groups, respectively (p < 0.001). However, no statistically significant difference was observed in the corresponding number of tumor-positive nodes among the groups (44 vs. 33; p = 0.470). Consequently, the rate of tumor-positive fluorescent LNs was higher in the hybrid group (7.4%) compared to the sequential group (2.6%; p = 0.002), indicating an enhanced positive predictive value for the hybrid approach. There was no difference in complications within 90 days after surgery (p = 0.78).


The hybrid tracer ICG-99mTc-nanocolloid improved the positive predictive value for tumor-bearing LNs while minimizing the number of fluorescent nodes compared to the sequential tracer approach. Consequently, the hybrid tracer ICG-99mTc-nanocolloid enables the most reliable and minimal invasive method for LN staging in PCa patients.


PCa patients with a  >5% risk of lymphatic involvement according to the 2012 Briganti nomogram and planned for prostatectomy were included and randomized (1:1) between ultrasound-guided intraprostatic tracer administration of ICG-99mTc-nanocolloid (n = 69) or 99mTc-nanocolloid (n = 69) 5 h before surgery. Preoperative lymphoscintigraphy and SPECT/CT were performed to define the locations of the SLNs. Additionally, all participants in the sequential group received an injection of free-ICG at time of surgery. Subsequently, all (S)LNs were dissected using fluorescence guidance followed by an extended pelvic lymph node dissection (ePLND). The primary outcome was the total number of surgically removed (S)LNs and tumor-positive (S)LNs.


To determine the diagnostic accuracy of the hybrid tracer indocyanine green (ICG)-Technetium-99 m(99mTc)-nanocolloid compared to sequential tracers of 99mTc-nanocolloid and free-ICG in detecting tumor-positive lymph nodes (LN) during primary surgery in prostate cancer (PCa) patients.

More about this publication

European journal of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging
  • Volume 50
  • Issue nr. 9
  • Pages 2861-2871
  • Publication date 01-07-2023

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