VueBox® perfusion analysis of Contrast-Enhanced Ultrasound (CEUS) examinations in patients with primary hyperparathyroidism for preoperative detection of parathyroid gland adenoma


AIM: Aim of this study was to firstly describe reproducible, objective perfusion parameters of contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) kinetics of parathyroid gland adenoma (PA) using perfusion analysis software (VueBox®, Bracco, Italy). Thereby the efficiency of quantitative CEUS for characterization of PA should be evaluated comparing US to postoperative histopathological findings after PA resection. MATERIAL AND METHODS: 42 patients with symptoms/lab work suggestive of pHPT presented a parathyroid gland lesion in B-mode US, which was consequently analyzed by dynamic CEUS. CEUS was performed by one experienced examiner after i.v.-injection of max. 2.4 ml sulphurhexaflouride microbubbles saving digital DICOM cine loops (up to 25 s) and images. PA were evaluated during arterial, venous and late phase (up to 3 min.) for perfusion characterization. A retrospective, blinded VueBox® perfusion analysis of arterial phase of 28/42 PA was performed by a second, independent examiner placing 3 ROIs manually in the PA (center, rim of PA, surrounding thyroid gland tissue) to objectify findings. US findings were correlated to postoperative histology after PA resection. RESULTS: Out of 42 patients with PA findings in CEUS, perfusion analysis could be performed in 28/42 cases only as some CEUS cine loops had too much moving. In three cases the second examiner could not detect PA retrospectively, in 25 cases PA were characterized correctly resulting in a sensitivity rate of 89.3 %. VueBox® perfusion analysis confirmed that PA present a persisting hypervascularization of the rim with higher TTP (mean 7.93 s centrally, 8.36 s rim-sided), mTT (mean 56.6 s centrally, 64.5 s rim-sided) and lower PE (mean 10542.93 rm2 centrally, 8909.21 rm2 rim-sided) peripherally followed by a central wash-out during later phases. RT was comparable in all defined regions. CONCLUSION: VueBox® analysis of parathyroid gland CEUS examinations seemed to be a valuable tool for quantification of a PA’s perfusion and can help to detect and localize hyperfunctional parathyroid glands prior to surgery.
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