18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography (18F-FDG PET/CT) is increasingly used in patients with advanced melanoma. Immune checkpoint inhibitors and BRAF/MEK-targeted therapy have transformed the therapeutic landscape of metastatic melanoma. Consequently, a need for markers predicting (early) response to treatment and for monitoring treatment (toxicity) has arisen. This systematic review appraises the current literature evidence for rational use of 18F-FDG PET/CT scans in staging, clinical decision-making, treatment monitoring and follow-up in advanced melanoma. 18F-FDG PET/CT has high overall accuracy for detection of distant metastases and is, combined with cerebral MRI, the preferred imaging strategy for staging metastatic melanoma. In contrast, strong evidence supporting the standard use of 18F-FDG PET/CT for predicting and monitoring therapy response and toxicity is currently lacking. Essential for determining the position of 18F-FDG PET/CT during treatment course in advanced melanoma are well-designed studies with standardized scanning protocols, incorporation of clinical parameters and comparison with contrast-enhanced CT alone.
- BRAF(/MEK) inhibition
- Positron emission tomography