A Pilot Study Assessing PET Probes to Detect Cancerous Tissue During Surgery for Recurrent Ovarian Cancer

Full Title

Intraoperative Detection of Lesions Using PET (Positron Emission Tomography) Probes During Secondary Cytoreductive Surgery for Recurrent Ovarian, Fallopian Tube and Primary Peritoneal Cancer: A Pilot Study


Positron emission tomography (PET) scanning may be used before surgery for recurrent ovarian cancer to pinpoint where cancer cells may be residing. In this study, surgeons are evaluating special wand-like PET probes to be used during the surgery to find cancerous tissue. If effective, the probes could increase the amount of cancerous tissue that a surgeon can remove, potentially reducing the risk of future cancer recurrence and spread.

Patients will receive an injection of a radioactively labeled sugar (glucose) before the surgery. The surgeon will use two different probes — one that detects high levels of gamma radiation and another that detects high levels of beta radiation — to locate cancerous lesions. Because cancer cells consume more glucose than normal cells, they will also absorb more of the radiation and emit higher amounts of radioactivity. The surgeon will remove tissue suspected to contain cancer cells and send it to be analyzed.


To be eligible for this study, patients must meet several criteria, including but not limited to the following:

  • Patients must be experiencing a first recurrence of ovarian cancer six or more months following completion of chemotherapy that included a platinum drug (such as cisplatin).
  • Patients must be candidates for a second surgery to remove cancerous tissue.
  • This study is open to patients ages 18 and older.

For more information and to inquire about eligibility for this study, please contact Dr. Dennis Chi at 212-639-5016.