T2-weighted MR Imaging in the Assessment of Cirrhotic Liver

T2-weighted MR Imaging in the Assessment of Cirrhotic Liver

T2-weighted MR Imaging in the Assessment of Cirrhotic Liver


Hero K. Hussain, MD ; Ibrahim Syed, MD ; Hanh V. Nghiem, MD ; Timothy D. Johnson, PhD ; Ruth C. Carlos, MD, MS ; William J. Weadock, MD ; Isaac R. Francis, MD

PURPOSE: To assess if T2-weighted magnetic resonance (MR) imaging provides added diagnostic value in combination with dynamic gadolinium-enhanced MR imaging in the detection and characterization of nodular lesions in cirrhotic liver.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Two readers retrospectively and independently analyzed 54 MR imaging studies in 52 patients with cirrhosis. In session 1, readers reviewed T1-weighted and dynamic gadolinium-enhanced images. In session 2, readers reviewed T1-weighted, dynamic gadolinium-enhanced, and respiratory-triggered T2-weighted fast spin-echo images. Readers identified and characterized all focal lesions by using a scale of 1–4 (1, definitely benign; 4, definitely malignant). Multireader correlated receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was employed to assess radiologist performance in session 2 compared with session 1. The difference in the areas under the ROC curves for the two sessions was tested. In a third session, readers assessed conspicuity of biopsy-proved lesions on T2-weighted MR images by using a scale of 1–3 (1, not seen; 3, well seen) and identified causes of reduced conspicuity.

RESULTS: Two additional benign lesions were detected by each reader in session 2. Fifty-five lesions had pathologic verification, including 32 malignant, three high-grade dysplastic, and 20 benign nodules. There was no significant difference in the area under the ROC curves between the two sessions (P = .48). Thirty-two lesions were inconspicuous on T2-weighted MR images because of parenchymal heterogeneity, breathing artifacts (particularly in patients with ascites), and lesion isointensity with liver parenchyma. T2-weighted MR imaging was useful in the evaluation of cysts and lymph nodes.

CONCLUSION: T2-weighted MR imaging does not provide added diagnostic value in the detection and characterization of focal lesions in cirrhotic liver.

Related Content

Want to get started?

We would love to talk with you.