Apparent Diffusion Coefficient of Uterine Leiomyoma as a Predictor of the Potential Response to Uterine Artery Embolization

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To determine the utility of the apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) of uterine leiomyoma for prediction of the potential response to uterine artery embolization (UAE).

Materials and Methods:

This prospective study included 49 patients with uterine leiomyomas who underwent diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance (MR) imaging before UAE between May 2011 and January 2012. All patients also underwent 3-month follow-up MR imaging after UAE. Using conventional and diffusion-weighted MR imaging sequences, 72 uterine leiomyomas ≥ 3 cm were prospectively evaluated. The volume of each leiomyoma was calculated, and quantitative measurement of ADC was performed. Regression analysis was used to evaluate the relationship between ADC and volumetric response after UAE. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis was performed to determine the sensitivity and specificity of ADC for prediction of the potential response to UAE. Interclass correlation coefficient analysis was used to assess interobserver variability between two radiologists.


Volume reduction rates of leiomyomas after UAE ranged from 0.2%–89.1% (mean, 44.1%). ADC ranged from 0.559 × 10−3 mm2/s to 1.814 × 10−3 mm2/s (mean, 1.170 × 10−3 mm2/s). ADC was statistically significantly related to volumetric response of leiomyomas (P = .014). Using a threshold of 1.092 × 10−3 mm2/s, the sensitivity and specificity of ADC for prediction of > 50% volume reduction of the leiomyoma after UAE were 82.6% and 52.3%, respectively. Using a threshold of 1.023 × 10−3 mm2/s, the sensitivity and specificity of ADC for prediction of < 30% volume reduction were 80.8% and 33.3%, respectively. The interclass correlation coefficient for measuring ADC of uterine leiomyomas between two radiologists was 0.98.


ADC of uterine leiomyomas was significantly related to the volume reduction after UAE. ADC may be useful in predicting the potential response to UAE. A high ADC of the uterine leiomyoma may be associated with a greater volume reduction after UAE.

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