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Fusion imaging of ultrasound and MRI in the assessment of locally advanced cervical cancer: a prospective study
  1. Francesca Moro1,
  2. Benedetta Gui2,
  3. Damiano Arciuolo1,
  4. Valentina Bertoldo1,
  5. Roberta Borzi1,
  6. Paola Romeo1,
  7. Federica Petta2,
  8. Francesco Cambi2,
  9. Tina Pasciuto1,
  10. Gian Franco Zannoni1,3,
  11. Vincenzo Valentini2,4,
  12. Riccardo Manfredi2,4,
  13. Giovanni Scambia1,5 and
  14. Antonia Carla Testa1,5
  1. 1 Dipartimento Scienze della Salute della Donna, del Bambino e di Sanità Pubblica, Fondazione Policlinico Universitario Agostino Gemelli, IRCCS, Rome, Italy
  2. 2 Dipartimento di Diagnostica per Immagini, Radioterapia, Oncologia ed Ematologia, UOC di Radiologia e Neuroradiologia, Fondazione Policlinico Universitario Agostino Gemelli, IRCCS, Rome, Italy
  3. 3 Istituto di Anatomia Patologica, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome, Italy
  4. 4 Istituto di Radiologia, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome, Italy
  5. 5 Istituto di Clinica Ostetrica e Ginecologica, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome, Italy
  1. Correspondence to Dr Francesca Moro, Dipartimento Scienze della Salute della Donna, del Bambino e di Sanità Pubblica, Fondazione Policlinico Universitario Agostino Gemelli, IRCCS, Rome 00168, Italy; morofrancy{at}gmail.com

Abstract

Background Fusion imaging is a new diagnostic method that integrates MRI and ultrasound. It may improve the detection and staging of locally advanced cervical cancer.

Objective To evaluate the feasibility and accuracy of fusion imaging in patients with locally advanced cervical cancer.

Methods Patients with suspicion of locally advanced cervical cancer at clinical examination and/or imaging, who were candidates for neoadjuvant treatment (chemotherapy or chemoradiation) followed by surgery, were prospectively enrolled between March and November 2018. MRI, ultrasound, and fusion images were obtained before and after neoadjuvant treatment. Feasibility, success of the fusion examination, and time needed to perform fusion studies were evaluated. The rates of concordance between MRI and ultrasound before and after performing fusion, using Cohen, Spearman, and McNemar tests were calculated. The agreement between MRI and ultrasound examination, and the agreement between radiologist and gynecologist during the fusion technique in assessing local extension of disease and the presence of residual disease after neoadjuvant therapy, were also analyzed. The rates of concordance between MRI and ultrasound examination before and after performing fusion imaging, using Cohen’s kappa and Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient were calculated. A McNemar test was used to assess if there were statistical significant differences in the parameters’ agreement before and after performing fusion imaging.

Results 40 patients were selected and of these, 33 were analyzed. A total of 52 fusion examinations were performed: 33 (63.5%) of 52 at the time of diagnosis and 19 (36.5%) of 52 after neoadjuvant treatment. Fusion imaging was feasible in 50 (96%) of 52 studies. The median overall time of fusion execution was 13 min (range 6–30) and the time spent in performing a fusion examination decreased from the first to the last examination (20 vs 6 min). The agreement between MRI and ultrasound parameters increased after performing fusion, particularly for parametrial infiltration (74% vs 86%, p=0.014 for the right posterior parametrium; 66% vs 80%, p=0.008 for the left posterior parametrium, 70% vs 82%, p=0.014 for the right lateral parametrium).

Conclusions Fusion of MRI and ultrasound is feasible in patients with locally advanced cervical cancer and may increase the diagnostic accuracy of the single imaging methods. Fusion provides multiple diagnostic opportunities in gynecological oncology.

  • fusion
  • ultrasonography
  • MRI
  • cervical cancer
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Footnotes

  • Contributors FM and BG: created the study design, recruited patients, undertook data analysis and interpretation, statistical analysis, and wrote the report. ACT, GS, GFZ, and RM: supervised the whole process. VB, RB, PR, FP, and FC: participated in patient recruitment. TP, DA, and VV: contributed to data collection and curation. All authors approved the final report.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The study was approved by the local ethics committee (protocol number 9598/18 ID 1972).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information. The study was approved by the local ethics committee (protocol number 9598/18 ID 1972). All clinical and imaging information were collected prospectively and entered into a dedicated Excel file.

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