T De Falco

University of Naples Federico II, Napoli, Campania, Italy

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Publications (7)20.67 Total impact

  • A Cuocolo, M Petretta, W Acampa, T De Falco
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    ABSTRACT: Cardiac imaging with gated single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) allows the evaluation of myocardial perfusion and analysis of global and regional left ventricular function. Gated SPECT is a validated and established diagnostic and prognostic method for evaluation of patients with suspected and known coronary artery disease. Significant improvements in software and gamma camera technology in SPECT cardiac imaging have been obtained. New detectors open a scenario for faster imaging with lower radiation dose to the patient. Appropriate use of the SPECT imaging is regulated by evidence-based guidelines and appropriateness criteria as well as by third-party payers in an effort to restrain the unsustainable growth of imaging testing recently observed. Future of cardiac SPECT imaging will be driven by societal demand for cost effective, accurate, and safe testing, which will improve meaningfully patients' management and outcomes.
    The quarterly journal of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging: official publication of the Italian Association of Nuclear Medicine (AIMN) [and] the International Association of Radiopharmacology (IAR), [and] Section of the Society of... 04/2010; 54(2):129-44. · 1.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To prospectively compare the assessment of metabolic response to yttrium 90 ((90)Y)-ibritumomab tiuxetan radioimmunotherapy (RIT) by using fluorine 18 ((18)F) fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) combined positron emission tomographic-computed tomographic (PET/CT) imaging at 2 and 6 months to determine the most appropriate time to detect therapeutic response in refractory non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) patients treated with RIT. The ethical committee of the university approved the protocol and all patients signed informed consent. Twenty-three consecutive patients (10 women, 13 men; mean age, 51.8 years +/-7.3 [standard deviation]) treated by using RIT for relapsed or refractory follicular NHL were enrolled. For all patients, (18)F FDG PET/CT scanning was performed at baseline and at 2 and 6 months after RIT. Response was assessed by using the International Workshop Criteria (IWC) and revised criteria (IWC + PET) as well as the criteria of the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer. One-way analysis of variance for repeated measures, receiver operator curve analysis, and Kaplan-Meier curves were used for statistical analysis. PET/CT performed at 2 months revealed complete (n = 12) or partial (n = 4) metabolic response in 16 of 23 patients with complete or partial clinical response. These findings were all confirmed at 6-month scanning. PET/CT indicated refractory or persistent disease at 2 and 6 months in the remaining seven patients. Better overall survival was observed for patients with a reduction in the maximum standard uptake value of 49% or higher (both at 2 and 6 months after RIT) when compared with those with a decrease of less than 49% (P < .05). Early assessment of response to RIT by using PET/CT might be useful in the identification of patients needing additional therapeutic strategies.
    Radiology 01/2010; 254(1):245-52. · 6.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of our study was to compare dual-time-point (18)F-FDG PET/CT, performed with the patient in the prone position, and contrast-enhanced MRI in patients with suspected breast malignancy. Forty-four patients with 55 breast lesions underwent two PET/CT scans (dual-time-point imaging) in the prone position and breast MRI. Sensitivity, specificity, and overall accuracy were calculated. In addition, the average percentage of change in standard uptake values (Delta%SUV(max)) between time point 1 and time point 2 was calculated for PET/CT. A final histopathologic diagnosis was available for all patients. MRI showed an overall accuracy of 95%, with sensitivity and specificity of 98% and 80%. Conversely, dual-time-point PET/CT showed an accuracy of 84% for lesions with an SUV(max) > or = 2.5 or with a positive Delta%SUV(max), with sensitivity and specificity of 80% and 100% versus 69% accuracy, 62% sensitivity (both, p < 0.001), and 100% specificity (p not significant) for single-time-point PET/CT. On PET/CT, malignant lesions showed an increase in FDG between time points 1 and 2, with a Delta%SUV(max) of 11 +/- 24. Benign lesions showed either no change or a decrease in SUV(max) between time points 1 and 2, with a Delta%SUV(max) of -21 +/- 7. A dual time point improves PET/CT accuracy in patients with a suspected breast malignancy over single-time-point PET/CT. On PET/CT, FDG is increasingly taken up over time in breast tumors; conversely, benign lesions show a decrease in FDG uptake over time. These changes in SUV might represent a reliable parameter that can be used to differentiate benign from malignant lesions of the breast on PET/CT examination.
    American Journal of Roentgenology 11/2008; 191(5):1323-30. · 2.90 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To examine: (1) the feasibility of PET/CT colonography (PET/CTc) in patients with colorectal polyps; (2) the impact of metabolic information on CTc interpretation and, conversely, the impact of morphological information on PET characterisation of focal colorectal uptake. Ten patients with colorectal polyps underwent PET/CTc, followed within 3 h by therapeutic conventional colonoscopy (CC). A radiologist and a nuclear medicine physician analysed the PET/CTc images. The agreement of morphological and metabolic information in the colon and rectum was evaluated. The sensitivity and specificity of PET, CT and PET/CT were calculated for colorectal polyps. Seventeen polypoid lesions were identified at CC: six< or =5 mm, six between 6 and 9 mm, and five > or =10 mm (four hyperplastic polyps, 11 tubular adenomas, one adenocarcinoma and one submucosal lipoma). A total of 20 scans (supine and prone) were performed in the ten patients: the agreement of morphological and metabolic information was excellent in 17 scans, good in two and moderate in one. PET/CTc showed a sensitivity of 91% for lesions > or =6 mm and a specificity of 100%. The metabolic information did not disclose any further polyps missed on CTc. The morphological information permitted correct classification of all eight instances of focal radiotracer uptake. PET/CTc is a feasible study. Adding a colonographic protocol to PET/CT images seems to allow correct characterisation of all cases of colorectal focal radiotracer uptake. The metabolic information does not seem to increase the accuracy of CTc.
    European journal of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging 10/2007; 34(10):1594-603. · 5.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Crohn's disease (CD) is frequently associated with extra-intestinal manifestations (EIMs) and infliximab has been recently proposed for the treatment of CD with EIMs. Our aim was to evaluate the short-term efficacy of infliximab in this treatment. Thirty CD patients were treated with infliximab. Fifteen patients (50%) showed EIMs before starting therapy. Ten patients presented an arthritis (five sacroiliitis, five spondylitis), with six also reporting peripheral arthralgias. Four patients presented cutaneous EIMs while three patients had an ocular EIM. At week 10, all patients reported an improvement in EIMs. Regarding arthritis, ASAS20 and ASAS40 improvement was observed in 80% and 60% of patients, respectively. In the four patients with cutaneous EIMs and in the three with ocular EIMs, complete healing was observed. Recurrence was observed in 10 out of 15 patients (66%) and a second course of treatment with infliximab was required. This proved to be effective in all cases except for one patient who stopped treatment because of a severe adverse reaction. Infliximab is an effective drug in the short-term treatment of EIMs complicating CD. Although relapse of EIMs occurs frequently, retreatment ensures effective control of the symptoms.
    Scandinavian Journal of Rheumatology 01/2005; 34(5):387-91. · 2.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Faecal calprotectin is predictive of clinical relapse in inflammatory bowel disease and ultrasound is sensitive in detecting its post-surgical recurrence. However, no data regarding the role of calprotectin in predicting post-surgical recurrence in asymptomatic Crohn's disease are available. The aim of this study was to prospectively evaluate the role of calprotectin as a predictive marker for one year post-surgical endoscopic recurrence in comparison with ultrasound in patients with asymptomatic Crohn's disease. We consecutively enlisted 50 patients who had undergone a resection for Crohn's disease. Faecal calprotectin was analysed and ultrasound were performed at the third month, and a colonoscopy after one year. The sensitivity and specificity of these two techniques were evaluated using endoscopic findings as a golden standard. A Receiver Operator Curve (ROC) curve was plotted, in order to identify the best-cut off value for calprotectin. 39 out of 50 patients were evaluated by performing a colonoscopy after one year; 19 patients had an endoscopic recurrence after one year. Calprotectin sensitivity and specificity were calculated for 5 different cut-off values; the best cut-off value for calprotectin sensitivity (63%) and specificity (75%) was > 200 mg/L. The US sensitivity and specificity at the third month were 26% and 90% respectively. When performed three months after surgery ultrasound is more specific than calprotectin in predicting endoscopic recurrence. Faecal calprotectin at a dosage > 200 mg/L seems to have a better sensitivity than ultrasound. Values of calprotectin > 200 mg can be an indication to colonoscopy in the group of patients with negative ultrasound in order to detect early recurrence.
    European review for medical and pharmacological sciences 10(1):17-22. · 1.09 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Crohn's disease (CD) frequently involves the small bowel. Actually, the diagnosis of CD is made by ileocolonoscopy (IC) and small bowel enteroclysis (SBE), while trans-abdominal bowel sonography (BS) and Tc-99m-HMPAO leukocyte scintigraphy (LS) are only partially used in spite of their minimal invasiveness. to compare the diagnostic accuracy of these procedures for the diagnosis of small bowel CD. in about two years a series of consecutive subjects underwent IC, SBE, BS and LS for either suspected or known small bowel CD. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value for CD diagnosis of the studied procedures were respectively: 98%, 97%, 98% and 97% for SBE; 92%, 97%, 98%, and 88% for BS; 90%, 93%, 96% and 85% for LS. In addition, the parallel combined use of BS and LS led to overall sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value of 100%, 93%, 96%, 100%, respectively. SBE, BS and LS are accurate procedures for the diagnosis of small bowel Crohn's disease. The use of BS and LS, particularly in combination, can be proposed as early diagnostic approach to subjects with a suspicion of disease.
    European review for medical and pharmacological sciences 8(5):219-24. · 1.09 Impact Factor