(89)Sr bremsstrahlung single photon emission computed tomography using a gamma camera for bone metastases.
Sixty-four patients with painful metastatic breast cancer in bone were treated with 2 MBq/kg of strontium-89 chloride as a single intravenous injection. Patients were followed with records of medication, hematology parameters, serial bone and Sr-89 bremsstrahlung images and with a point pain score scale (10-0). The response was assessed during a 6-month period of follow-up. Fifty-two of 64 patients (81%) showed at least a moderate improvement. Eighteen out of the 52 responders showed a dramatic decrease in bone pain (35%), 21 (40%) presented a satisfactory response and in 13 cases (25%) the response was moderate. Only 12 patients (19%) from the whole group did not feel any improvement on pain palliation. A statistically significant decrease of pretreatment levels of platelets and leukocyte counts was observed after 4-6 weeks of therapy in 50 (70%) patients. Although most patients showed no change in their bone scans after 3 months of treatment, an obvious improvement was observed in 3 of them. Furthermore no additional painful metastases on their bone scintigraphic images were observed. The selective strontium-89 local uptake in metastatic sites was also confirmed directly by bremsstrahlung scans which were absolutely comparable to the respective 99mTc bone scans. Precautions have been taken against Sr-89 contamination from the patients' blood or excretions.