Objective We aimed to evaluate the predictive value of FDG PET-CT scan and CEA measurements in recurrent colorectal cancer (CRC) patients. Methods The records of 211 CRC patients who had FDG PET-CT scans between April 2009 and June 2011 due to suspicion of recurrence were extracted from the data of our previous report of 235 patients after 24 patients were excluded from the study due to lack of follow-up data or death unrelated to CRC. FDG PET-CT findings, simultaneous CEA levels, and survival data were evaluated retrospectively to determine the prognostic factors that affected the overall survival (OS) of the patients. Results The mean age of 211 patients was 60.2 +/- 12.8 years. The median follow-up time was 39 months (CI 95%: 4-123 months). The CRC-related death rate was 71.6% and the median OS time was measured 39 months (CI 95%: 27-50 months) for 211 patients. The median OS time for the patients with positive findings for recurrence in PET scans was 28 months (CI 95%: 22-33 months) which was significantly shorter (p < 0.001) than that of PET-negative patients (median OS was not reached; mean OS: 105 months; CI 95%: 95-116 months). CEA positivity also had a significant negative effect on survival (p < 0.001). Median OS times in patients with elevated and normal levels of CEA were 24 months (CI 95%: 17-30 months) and 85 months (CI 95%: 62-107 months), respectively. When the effect of CEA positivity was evaluated in patients with negative PET scans for recurrence, no statistically significant difference was determined (p = 0.209), but PET positivity had a significant negative effect on OS in patients with normal levels of CEA (p < 0.001). On the other hand, PET negativity had a significant positive effect on OS in patients with elevated CEA levels (p = 0.002). The extend of recurrent disease had also a significant effect on OS. The patients with distant metastasis had less favorable OS than those patients with only local recurrence (p < 0.001). The presence of liver metastasis also diminished the OS, but this effect was not statistically significant (p = 0.177). Conclusion FDG PET-CT scan which is a reliable imaging method to detect recurrence in CRC patients, regardless of CEA levels, can also provide valuable prognostic information, even superior to that of CEA measurement.