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Improved Visibility of Metastatic Disease in the Liver During Intra-Arterial Therapy Using Delayed Arterial Phase Cone-Beam CT.



To compare the visibility of liver metastases on dual-phase cone-beam CT (DP-CBCT) and digital subtraction angiography (DSA), with reference to preinterventional contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (CE-MRI) of the liver.


This IRB-approved, retrospective study included 28 patients with neuroendocrine (NELM), colorectal (CRCLM), or sarcoma (SLM) liver metastases who underwent DP-CBCT during intra-arterial therapy (IAT) between 01/2010 and 10/2014. DP-CBCT was acquired after a single contrast agent injection in the tumor-feeding arteries at early and delayed arterial phases (EAP and DAP). The visibility of each lesion was graded by two radiologists in consensus on a three-rank scale (complete, partial, none) on DP-CBCT and DSA images using CE-MRI as reference.


47 NELM, 43 CRCLM, and 16 SLM were included. On DSA 85.1, 44.1, and 37.5 % of NELM, CRCLM, and SLM, were at least partially depicted, respectively. EAP-CBCT yielded significantly higher sensitivities of 88.3 and 87.5 % for CRCLM and SLM, respectively (p < 0.01), but not for NELM (89.4 %; p = 1.0). On DAP-CBCT all NELM, CRCLM, and SLM were visible (p < 0.001). Complete depiction was achieved on DSA for 59.6, 16.3, and 18.8 % of NELM, CRCLM, and SLM, respectively. The complete depiction rate on EAP-CBCT was significantly higher for CRCLM (46.5 %; p < 0.001), lower for NELM (40.4 %; p = 0.592), and similar for SLM (25 %, p = 0.399). On DAP-CBCT however, the highest rates of complete depiction were found-NELM (97.8 %; p = 0.008), CRCLM (95.3 %; p = 0.008), and SLM (100 %; p < 0.001).


DAP-CBCT substantially improved the visibility of liver metastases during IAT. Future studies need to evaluate the clinical impact.

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