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Coronal reformatting of axial images from 16-MDCT helps stage ovarian cancer

American College of Radiology

Examining axially acquired images obtained on a 16-MDCT (multidetector computed tomography) scanner in a coronal plane serves as a useful adjunct in the staging of ovarian cancer, says a new study by researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA.

The study included 18 patients with ovarian cancer who had been imaged with MDCT and had their axial images reformatted (reconstructed) in the coronal plane. Upon coronal reformatting, the overall readings in 15 (83%) of the cases were changed.

"We feel that in all patients being evaluated for metastatic ovarian malignancy because of a rising CA 125 blood protein level or other clinical signs, coronal images must be viewed in conjunction with the axial images, said Raul N. Uppot, MD, lead author of the study. Metastatic deposits in particular locations, such as below the diaphragm, can be missed on both axial imaging and during operative exploration, and therefore coronal image evaluation should be a necessary part of the evaluation."

In the area below the diaphragm, readings were changed in 10 of the 18 cases. "After examining the axial images, radiologists must view the coronal images in specific locations including the area below the diaphragm, the region of the medial crus, the area below the liver and the porta hepatis," he continued.

However, the authors do caution that certain limitations of the study do need to be taken into account, namely, its retrospective nature and a small sample patient size.

Dr. Uppot will present the study on May 3 during the American Roentgen Ray Society Annual Meeting in Miami Beach, FL.


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