Chemotherapy Response Assessment by FDG-PET-CT in Early-stage Classical Hodgkin Lymphoma: Moving Beyond the Five-Point Deauville Score

Sarah A. Milgrom, Wenli Dong, Mani Akhtari, Grace L. Smith, Chelsea C. Pinnix, Osama Mawlawi, Eric Rohren, Naveen Garg, Hubert Chuang, Zeinab Abou Yehia, Jay P. Reddy, Jillian R. Gunther, Joseph D. Khoury, Tina Suki, Eleanor M. Osborne, Yasuhiro Oki, Michelle Fanale, Bouthaina S. Dabaja

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Purpose In early-stage classical Hodgkin lymphoma, fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET)-computed tomography (CT) scans are performed routinely after chemotherapy, and the 5-point Deauville score is used to report the disease response. We hypothesized that other PET-CT parameters, considered in combination with Deauville score, would improve risk stratification. Methods and Materials Patients treated for stage I to II Hodgkin lymphoma from 2003 to 2013, who were aged ≥18 years and had analyzable PET-CT scans performed before and after chemotherapy, were eligible. The soft tissue volume (STV), maximum standardized uptake value, metabolic tumor volume, and total lesion glycolysis were recorded from the PET-CT scans before and after chemotherapy. Reductions were defined as 1 − (final PET-CT value)/(corresponding initial PET-CT value). The primary endpoint was freedom from progression (FFP). Results For 202 patients treated with chemotherapy with or without radiation therapy, the 5-year FFP was 89% (95% confidence interval 85%-93%). All PET-CT parameters were strongly associated with the Deauville score (P<.001) and FFP (P<.0001) on univariate analysis. The Deauville score was highly predictive of FFP (C-index 0.89) but was less discriminating in the Deauville 1 to 4 subset (C-index 0.67). Therefore, we aimed to identify PET-CT parameters that would improve risk stratification for this subgroup (n=187). STV reduction was predictive of outcome (C-index 0.71) and was dichotomized with an optimal cutoff of 0.65 (65% reduction in STV). A model incorporating the Deauville score and STV reduction predicted FFP more accurately than either measurement alone in the Deauville 1 to 4 subset (C-index 0.83). The improvement in predictive accuracy of this composite measure compared with the Deauville score alone met statistical significance (P=.045). Conclusions The relative reduction in tumor size is an independent predictor of outcome. Combined with the Deauville score, it might improve risk stratification and contribute to response-adapted individualization of therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)333-338
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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