Microvessel invasion is a major prognostic factor in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) that influences the suitability of surgery, but rarely can be evaluated preoperatively. This study was performed to identify preoperative MRI findings that reflect histopathological microvessel invasion in hepatocellular carcinoma. Gadobenate dimeglumine-enhanced four-arterial phase dynamic study and hepatobiliary phase images of preoperative MRI of 70 HCC lesions were retrospectively reviewed. Tumor size (cm), peritumoral enhancement, tumor margins, and radiological capsule were analyzed as radiological parameters reflecting microvessel invasion and were compared with histopathological references. The chi-square test and the independent t-test were used for univariate analysis, and a logistic regression analysis was performed for multivariate analysis. In univariate analysis, tumor size (p=0.030), peritumoral enhancement (p<0.001), and tumor margins (p=0.007) were associated with microvessel tumor invasion. However, in multivariate analysis irregular circumferential peritumoral enhancement only showed statistical significance (odds ratio 13.0), suggesting a high probability of microvessel invasion of HCC. Irregular circumferential peritumoral enhancement on contrast-enhanced multi-arterial phase dynamic MRI could be a preoperative surrogate marker for microvessel tumor invasion.
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging