Application value of MRI combined with positron emission tomography (PET)/CT in diagnosis and preoperative staging of tongue squamous cell carcinoma

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Abstract

Introduction:

This study aimed to compare and analyse the findings of tongue squamous cell carcinoma (TSCC) on MRI and positron emission tomography (PET)/CT and explore the diagnostic utility of combined MRI-PET/CT in the diagnosis and preoperative staging of TSCC.

Methods:

A prospective analysis of MRI and PET/CT data in 18 TSCC cases was performed. Cases were comprehensively staged on MRI and PET/CT preoperatively according to American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) staging criteria and confirmed by pathological results.

Results:

The highest and lowest sensitivities of preoperative AJCC staging I–IV using MRI alone, PET/CT alone and combined MRI-PET/CT were 100.0%, 100.0% and 100.0% (stage II) and 50.4%, 55.6% and 55.6% (stage I), respectively. The highest specificities were 100.0%, 100.0% and 100.0% (stage II), and the highest correct rates were 100.0%, 96.5% and 100.0% (stage II). Compared with the postoperative pathological staging, preoperative staging showed no significant difference for stages I–II and IV (P > 0.05); however, stage III showed a significant difference (P < 0.05). When combined MRI-PET/CT was compared with MRI alone in the accuracy of preoperative TSCC staging, there was no significant difference for stages I–III (P > 0.05), but there was a significant difference for stage IV (P < 0.05).

Conclusions:

Combined MRI and PET/CT could serve as an important tool for the accurate diagnosis and preoperative staging of TSCC and could improve the accuracy of preoperative TSCC staging.

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