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Semi-automated volumetric analysis of lymph node metastases during follow-up - Initial results

: Fabel, M.; Bolte, H.; Tengg-Kobligk, H. von; Bornemann, L.; Dicken, V.; Delorme, S.; Kauczor, H.-U.; Heller, M.; Biederer, J.


European radiology 21 (2011), No.4, pp.683-692
ISSN: 0938-7994
ISSN: 1613-3749
ISSN: 1432-1084
Journal Article
Fraunhofer MEVIS ()

Objective: Quantification of tumour burden in oncology requires accurate and reproducible evaluation. The current standard is RECIST measurement with its inherent disadvantages. Volumetric analysis is an alternative for therapy monitoring. The aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of volumetric analysis of lymph node metastases using a software prototype in a follow-up setting. Methods: MSCT was performed in 50 patients covering the chest, abdomen and pelvis. A total of 174 suspicious lymph nodes were evaluated by two radiologists regarding short axis diameters and volumetric analysis using semi-automated software. Quality of segmentation, time, maximum diameter and volume were documented. Variability of the derived change rates was computed as the standard deviation of the difference of the obtained respective change rates. Results: The software performance provides robust volumetric analysis. Quality of segmentation was rated acceptable to excellent in 76- 79% by each reader. Mean time spent per lesion was 38 s. The variability of change in effective diameters was 10.6%; for change rates of RECIST maximum diameter variability was 27.5%. Conclusion: Semi-automated volumetric analysis allows fast and convenient segmentation of most lymph node metastases. Compared with RECIST the inter-observer-variability in baseline and follow-up is reduced. This should principally allow subtle changes to be subclassified within the RECIST stable range as minor response [-15% to +10%].