Diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging in cystic renal masses

Fikret Balyemez, Ahmet Aslan, Ibrahim Inan, Ercan Ayaz, Vildan Karagöz, Sıdıka Şeyma Özkanlı, Murat Acar


Introduction: We aimed to introduce the diagnostic value of diffusion-weighted (DWI) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for distinguishing benign and malignant renal cystic masses.

Methods: Abdominal DWI-MRIs of patients with Bosniak categories 2F, 3, and 4 cystic renal masses were evaluated retrospectively. Cystic masses were assigned as benign or malignant according to histopathological or followup MRI findings and compared with apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values.

Results: There were 30 patients (18 males and 12 females, mean age was 59.23 ± 12.08 years [range 38‒83 years]) with cystic renal masses (eight Bosniak category 2F, 12 Bosniak category 3, 10 Bosniak category 4). Among them, 14 cysts were diagnosed as benign and 16 as malignant by followup imaging or histopathological findings. For the malignant lesions, the mean ADC values were lower than for benign lesions (p=0.001). An ADC value of ≤2.28 x10-6 mm2/s or less had a sensitivity of 75% and a specificity of 92.86% for detecting malignancy.

Conclusions: ADC can improve the diagnostic performance of MRI in the evaluation of complex renal cysts when used together with conventional MRI sequences.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5489/cuaj.3888