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Abdom Imaging. 2008 Jul-Aug;33(4):444-51.

Hilar cholangiocarcinoma: MRI/MRCP in staging and treatment planning.

Author information

1
Radiology DEA, Umberto I Hospital, La Sapienza University, Rome, Italy. gabrielemasselli@libero.it

Abstract

The role of MR imaging in hilar cholangiocarcinoma is to confirm/reach a diagnosis and to assess resectability. Hilar cholangiocarcinoma shows the same signal intensity pattern of peripheral tumors both on T1- and T2-weighted images. On magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) images, hilar cholangiocarcinoma appears as a moderately irregular thickening of the bile duct wall (5 mm) with symmetric upstream dilation of the intrahepatic bile ducts. The aim of preoperative investigation in Klatskin tumors typically requires the evaluation of the level of biliary obstruction, the intrahepatic tumor spread, and the vascular involvement; it also needs to show any atrophy-hypertrophy complex. Because of its intrinsic high tissue contrast and multiplanar capability, MR imaging and MRCP are able to detect and preoperatively assess patients with cholangiocarcinoma, investigating all involved structures such as bile ducts, vessels and hepatic parenchyma. The main reason for surgical/imaging discrepancy is represented by the microscopic diffusion along the mucosa and in the perineural space.

PMID:
17638040
DOI:
10.1007/s00261-007-9281-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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