Early Detection of Cancer: Evaluation of MR Imaging Grading Systems in Patients with Suspected Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma
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AbstractBACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: We evaluated modifications to our contrast-enhanced MR imaging grading system for symptomatic patients with suspected nasopharyngeal carcinoma, aimed at improving discrimination of early-stage cancer and benign hyperplasia. We evaluated a second non-contrast-enhanced MR imaging grading system for asymptomatic patients from nasopharyngeal carcinoma plasma screening programs.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Dedicated nasopharyngeal MR imaging before (plain scan system) and after intravenous contrast administration (current and modified systems) was reviewed in patients from a nasopharyngeal carcinoma–endemic region, comprising 383 patients with suspected disease without nasopharyngeal carcinoma and 383 patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma. The modified and plain scan systems refined primary tumor criteria, added a nodal assessment, and expanded the system from 4 to 5 grades. The overall combined sensitivity and specificity of the 3 systems were compared using the extended McNemar test (a χ2 value Embedded Image> 5.99 indicates significance).

RESULTS: The current, modified, and plain scan MR imaging systems yielded sensitivities of 99.74%, 97.91%, and 97.65%, respectively, and specificities of 63.45%, 89.56% and 86.42%, respectively. The modified system yielded significantly better performance than the current (Embedded Image = 122) and plain scan (Embedded Image = 6.1) systems. The percentages of patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma in grades 1–2, grade 3, and grades 4–5 for the modified and plain scan MR imaging systems were 0.42% and 0.44%; 6.31% and 6.96%; and 90.36% and 87.79%, respectively. No additional cancers were detected after contrast administration in cases of a plain scan graded 1–2.

CONCLUSIONS: We propose a modified MR imaging grading system that improves diagnostic performance for nasopharyngeal carcinoma detection. Contrast was not valuable for low MR imaging grades, and the plain scan shows potential for use in screening programs.
All Author(s) ListKing AD, Woo JKS, Ai QY, Mo FKF, So TY, Lam WKJ, Tse IOL, Vlantis AC, Yip KWN, Hui EP, Ma BBY, Chiu RWK, Chan ATC, Lo YMD, Chan KCA
Journal nameAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Year2020
Month3
Volume Number41
Issue Number3
Pages515 - 521
ISSN0195-6108
eISSN1936-959X
LanguagesEnglish-United States

Last updated on 2020-23-10 at 00:26