Assessment of the Vascularization of Neuroendocrine Tumors by Stimulated Acoustic Emission of SH U 508A Ultrasound Contrast Agent and Color or Power Doppler Sonography

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Ricke J, Lopez Hänninen E, Amthauer H, Lemke A, Felix R.Assessment of the vascularization of neuroendocrine tumors by stimulated acoustic emission of SH U 508A ultrasound contrast agent and color or power Doppler sonography. Invest Radiol 2000;35:253–259.RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES.To assess the vascularization of neuroendocrine tumors by stimulated acoustic emission (SAE) of SH U 508A during the blood pool phase in comparison with contrast-enhanced Doppler sonography.METHODS.Thirty-six patients with neuroendocrine tumors received contrast-enhanced Doppler sonography and 21, an additional SAE. To classify tumor perfusion on Doppler sonography, a 4-step rating score was introduced: (1) no vessels (hypoperfusion); (2) one feeding or central vessel (hypoperfusion); (3) some vessels (hyperperfusion); and (4) disseminated vessels (hyperperfusion). In 36 patients, 1 pancreatic primary tumor, 33 liver metastases, 1 splenic metastasis, and 1 lymph node metastasis were examined. Results were correlated with biphasic spiral CT (n = 35) and angiography (n = 2).RESULTS.Arterial-phase CT and digital subtraction angiography revealed 18 hyper- and 18 hypoperfused lesions. Contrast-enhanced Doppler correctly classified 15 of 18 patients (83%) with hyperperfused lesions as well as 16 of 18 (89%) hypoperfused tumors by applying the rating score. SAE correctly identified 4 of 9 hyperperfused lesions (44%), 2 were isoperfused compared with normal liver tissue (22%), and 3 were hypoperfused (33%). Of 12 hypoperfused lesions, 11 were classified correctly (92%), and 1 showed isoperfusion. Hence, the positive and negative predictive values for SAE were 80% and 69%, respectively. For contrast-enhanced Doppler sonography, positive and negative predictive values were 88% and 84%, respectively.CONCLUSIONS.Blood pool SAE failed to determine subtle tumor perfusion correctly. The rating score for contrast-enhanced Doppler sonography characterized tumor perfusion with high accuracy. The use of a contrast agent significantly improved perfusion characterization.

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