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Dig Liver Dis. 2010 Sep;42(9):635-41. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2010.01.009. Epub 2010 Feb 20.

Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography in evaluating hepatic metastases from neuroendocrine tumours.

Author information

1
Gastroenterology Unit II, Fondazione IRCCS Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Mangiagalli e Regina Elena, Via F Sforza 35, 20122 Milano, Italy. sara.massironi@libero.it

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

At presentation, gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumours (GEP NETs) frequently show prognostically negative hepatic involvement. The aim of this study was to characterise hepatic metastases of GEP NETs as revealed by contrast-enhanced ultrasonography (CEUS), which allows the fine definition of the microvascular system, and to correlate these findings to the biological behaviour of the tumour.

METHODS:

Eighteen out of 62 GEP NET patients examined between January 2007 and September 2008 had histologically proven hepatic metastases from primary ileal (#6), gastric (#1) or rectal (#1) carcinoids, pancreatic tumours (#7), or primary duodenal (#2) or occult gastrinomas (#1), and all underwent low mechanical index real-time CEUS with SonoVue injection.

RESULTS:

Strong early enhancement in the arterial phase was observed in 15 cases (83%), and a rapid wash-out in the portal venous phase in 14 (78%). In the late venous phase, the lesions were hypoechoic in 12 cases (67%), isoechoic in five (28%), and hyperechoic in one (0.05%). The time of arterial enhancement correlated with the Ki-67 proliferative index (r(s)=0.516; p=0.028).

CONCLUSIONS:

Most of the neuroendocrine liver metastases showed increased arterial enhancement at CEUS, a behaviour that is similar to that of hepatocellular carcinomas and the opposite of that of other metastases. CEUS can be a useful diagnostic means of characterising such metastases.

PMID:
20172770
DOI:
10.1016/j.dld.2010.01.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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