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Ultrasound Med Biol. 2012 Jul;38(7):1163-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2012.03.012. Epub 2012 May 12.

Intra- and interobserver agreement among bronchial endosonographers for the description of intrathoracic lymph nodes.

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Respiratory Service, Hospital Universitari Germans Trias i Pujol, Badalona, Barcelona, Spain.


Several sonographic features observed by endobronchial ultrasonography have been suggested to be useful to predict malignancy in mediastinal lymph nodes. To evaluate agreement to describe sonographic features, 28 video images were evaluated twice by eight expert bronchoscopists. The observers reviewed each case for the presence of coagulation necrosis sign (CNS), central hilar structure (CHS), heterogeneity, distinct margin, round shape, size >1 cm and malignancy. Intraobserver agreement was almost perfect for size (κ = 0.826), substantial for CNS (κ = 0.721) and shape (κ = 0.615), and moderate for CHS (κ = 0.565), heterogeneity (κ = 0.441) and margin (κ = 0.407). Interobserver agreement was substantial for size (κ = 0.641), moderate for shape (κ = 0.445), and fair for CNS (κ = 0.340) and margin (κ = 0.274). In conclusion, inter- and intraobserver agreement of the endosonographic features for mediastinal or hilar lymph nodes is good for shape or size but not good enough for the other ultrasonographic features.

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