Recent Submissions

  • The role of imaging in the diagnosis, staging and management of the osteochondral lesions of the talus

    Khan, Imran
    Osteochondral lesions of the talus (OLT) represent an abnormality of the articular cartilage and subchondral bone. The abnormality is typically associated with trauma though the exact aetiology remains unknown. Multiple staging systems have been developed to classify the abnormality and management can vary from conservative treatment to different surgical options. Early diagnosis is essential for optimal outcome and all imaging modalities have a role to play in patient management. The aim of this article is to review the pathology, classification, multimodality imaging appearances of OLT and how the imaging affects patient management.
  • Ethnic differences in cardiac structure and function assessed by MRI in healthy South Asian and White European people: a UK Biobank Study

    Alfuhied, Aseel; Arnold, Jayanth; Ayton, Sarah; Bilak, Joanna; Brady, Emer M; Dattani, Abhishek; Gulsin, Gaurav; Graham-Brown, Matthew P; McCann, Gerry P; SIngh, Anvesha; et al.
    Background: Echocardiographic studies indicate South Asian people have smaller ventricular volumes, lower mass and more concentric remodelling than White European people, but there are no data using cardiac MRI (CMR). We aimed to compare CMR quantified cardiac structure and function in White European and South Asian people. Methods: Healthy White European and South Asian participants in the UK Biobank Imaging CMR sub-study were identified by excluding those with a history of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, obesity or diabetes. Ethnic groups were matched by age and sex. Cardiac volumes, mass and feature tracking strain were compared. Results: 121 matched pairs (77 male/44 female, mean age 58±8 years) of South Asian and White European participants were included. South Asian males and females had smaller absolute but not indexed left ventricular (LV) volumes, and smaller absolute and indexed right ventricular volumes, with lower absolute and indexed LV mass and lower LV mass:volume than White European participants. Although there were no differences in ventricular or atrial ejection fractions, LV global longitudinal strain was higher in South Asian females than White European females but not males, and global circumferential strain was higher in both male and South Asian females than White European females. Peak early diastolic strain rates were higher in South Asian versus White European males, but not different between South Asian and White European females. Conclusions: Contrary to echocardiographic studies, South Asian participants in the UK Biobank study had less concentric remodelling and higher global circumferential strain than White European subjects. These findings emphasise the importance of sex- and ethnic- specific normal ranges for cardiac volumes and function.
  • Determining the impact of an artificial intelligence tool on the management of pulmonary nodules detected incidentally on CT (DOLCE) study protocol: a prospective, non-interventional multicentre UK study

    Das, Indrajeet (2024-01-04)
    Introduction: In a small percentage of patients, pulmonary nodules found on CT scans are early lung cancers. Lung cancer detected at an early stage has a much better prognosis. The British Thoracic Society guideline on managing pulmonary nodules recommends using multivariable malignancy risk prediction models to assist in management. While these guidelines seem to be effective in clinical practice, recent data suggest that artificial intelligence (AI)-based malignant-nodule prediction solutions might outperform existing models. Methods and analysis: This study is a prospective, observational multicentre study to assess the clinical utility of an AI-assisted CT-based lung cancer prediction tool (LCP) for managing incidental solid and part solid pulmonary nodule patients vs standard care. Two thousand patients will be recruited from 12 different UK hospitals. The primary outcome is the difference between standard care and LCP-guided care in terms of the rate of benign nodules and patients with cancer discharged straight after the assessment of the baseline CT scan. Secondary outcomes investigate adherence to clinical guidelines, other measures of changes to clinical management, patient outcomes and cost-effectiveness. Ethics and dissemination: This study has been reviewed and given a favourable opinion by the South Central-Oxford C Research Ethics Committee in UK (REC reference number: 22/SC/0142).Study results will be available publicly following peer-reviewed publication in open-access journals. A patient and public involvement group workshop is planned before the study results are available to discuss best methods to disseminate the results. Study results will also be fed back to participating organisations to inform training and procurement activities.
  • Development and validation of open-source deep neural networks for comprehensive chest x-ray reading: a retrospective, multicentre study

    Hopewell, Heath; Das, Indrajeet (2023-12-08)
    Background: Artificial intelligence (AI) systems for automated chest x-ray interpretation hold promise for standardising reporting and reducing delays in health systems with shortages of trained radiologists. Yet, there are few freely accessible AI systems trained on large datasets for practitioners to use with their own data with a view to accelerating clinical deployment of AI systems in radiology. We aimed to contribute an AI system for comprehensive chest x-ray abnormality detection. Methods: In this retrospective cohort study, we developed open-source neural networks, X-Raydar and X-Raydar-NLP, for classifying common chest x-ray findings from images and their free-text reports. Our networks were developed using data from six UK hospitals from three National Health Service (NHS) Trusts (University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, and University Hospitals Leicester NHS Trust) collectively contributing 2 513 546 chest x-ray studies taken from a 13-year period (2006-19), which yielded 1 940 508 usable free-text radiological reports written by the contemporary assessing radiologist (collectively referred to as the "historic reporters") and 1 896 034 frontal images. Chest x-rays were labelled using a taxonomy of 37 findings by a custom-trained natural language processing (NLP) algorithm, X-Raydar-NLP, from the original free-text reports. X-Raydar-NLP was trained on 23 230 manually annotated reports and tested on 4551 reports from all hospitals. 1 694 921 labelled images from the training set and 89 238 from the validation set were then used to train a multi-label image classifier. Our algorithms were evaluated on three retrospective datasets: a set of exams sampled randomly from the full NHS dataset reported during clinical practice and annotated using NLP (n=103 328); a consensus set sampled from all six hospitals annotated by three expert radiologists (two independent annotators for each image and a third consultant to facilitate disagreement resolution) under research conditions (n=1427); and an independent dataset, MIMIC-CXR, consisting of NLP-annotated exams (n=252 374). Findings: X-Raydar achieved a mean AUC of 0·919 (SD 0·039) on the auto-labelled set, 0·864 (0·102) on the consensus set, and 0·842 (0·074) on the MIMIC-CXR test, demonstrating similar performance to the historic clinical radiologist reporters, as assessed on the consensus set, for multiple clinically important findings, including pneumothorax, parenchymal opacification, and parenchymal mass or nodules. On the consensus set, X-Raydar outperformed historical reporter balanced accuracy with significance on 27 of 37 findings, was non-inferior on nine, and inferior on one finding, resulting in an average improvement of 13·3% (SD 13·1) to 0·763 (0·110), including a mean 5·6% (13·2) improvement in critical findings to 0·826 (0·119). Interpretation: Our study shows that automated classification of chest x-rays under a comprehensive taxonomy can achieve performance levels similar to those of historical reporters and exhibit robust generalisation to external data. The open-sourced neural networks can serve as foundation models for further research and are freely available to the research community. Funding: Wellcome Trust.
  • Image quality in whole-body MRI using the MY-RADS protocol in a prospective multi-centre multiple myeloma study

    Rennie, Winston (2023)
    Background: The Myeloma Response Assessment and Diagnosis System (MY-RADS) guidelines establish a standardised acquisition and analysis pipeline for whole-body MRI (WB-MRI) in patients with myeloma. This is the first study to assess image quality in a multi-centre prospective trial using MY-RADS. Methods: The cohort consisted of 121 examinations acquired across ten sites with a range of prior WB-MRI experience, three scanner manufacturers and two field strengths. Image quality was evaluated qualitatively by a radiologist and quantitatively using a semi-automated pipeline to quantify common artefacts and image quality issues. The intra- and inter-rater repeatability of qualitative and quantitative scoring was also assessed. Results: Qualitative radiological scoring found that the image quality was generally good, with 94% of examinations rated as good or excellent and only one examination rated as non-diagnostic. There was a significant correlation between radiological and quantitative scoring for most measures, and intra- and inter-rater repeatability were generally good. When the quality of an overall examination was low, this was often due to low quality diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI), where signal to noise ratio (SNR), anterior thoracic signal loss and brain geometric distortion were found as significant predictors of examination quality. Conclusions: It is possible to successfully deliver a multi-centre WB-MRI study using the MY-RADS protocol involving scanners with a range of manufacturers, models and field strengths. Quantitative measures of image quality were developed and shown to be significantly correlated with radiological assessment. The SNR of DW images was identified as a significant factor affecting overall examination quality. Trial registration:, NCT03188172 , Registered on 15 June 2017. Critical relevance statement: Good overall image quality, assessed both qualitatively and quantitatively, can be achieved in a multi-centre whole-body MRI study using the MY-RADS guidelines. Key points: • A prospective multi-centre WB-MRI study using MY-RADS can be successfully delivered. • Quantitative image quality metrics were developed and correlated with radiological assessment. • SNR in DWI was identified as a significant predictor of quality, allowing for rapid quality adjustment.
  • Impact of changing from autopsy to post-mortem CT in an entire HM Coroner region due to a shortage of available pathologists

    Robinson, C; Morgan, B (2023-11)
    A significant problem facing routine medicolegal coroner-referred autopsies is a shortfall of pathologists prepared to perform them. This was particularly acute in Lancashire, where the coroner decided to initiate a service that relied on post-mortem computed tomography (PMCT). This involved training anatomical pathology technologists (APTs) to perform external examinations, radiographers to perform scans, and radiologists to interpret them. The service started in 2018 and now examines over 1,500 cases per year. This study outlines the PMCT process using NHS staff, with CT equipment and logistics managed by the commercial sector. It compares the demographics and outcomes of PM investigations for two 6-month periods: the autopsy service prior to 2018, and then the PMCT service. These data were then compared with previous UK PMCT data. Referrals for adult non-suspicious deaths were made in 913 cases of which 793 (87%) had PMCT between 01/10/2018 and 31/03/2019. Fifty-six cases had autopsy after PMCT, so 81% of cases potentially avoided autopsy. The PMCT service did not delay release of bodies to the next-of-kin. Comparing the cause of death given shows no difference in the proportions of natural and unnatural deaths. There was an increase in diagnosis of coronary artery disease for PMCT, with less respiratory diagnoses, a feature not previously demonstrated. These data suggest PMCT is a practical solution for potentially failing autopsy services. By necessity, this involves changes in diagnoses, as PMCT and autopsy have different strengths and weakness, but the ability to pick up unnatural death appears unaffected.
  • Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on a post-mortem CT service for adult non-suspicious death

    James, J; Morgan, B; Richards, C; Robertson, C; West, K (2023-11)
    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the post-mortem computed tomography (PMCT) service was expanded from three to seven cases per day to help mortuary services and avoid invasive autopsy. Additional targeted angiography and pulmonary ventilation procedures were stopped and triage rules relaxed to allow more indications to be scanned, including those requiring toxicology. A service evaluation was performed for the first 3-months of the COVID-19 pandemic compared to the equivalent period the previous year to study the impact of these changes. It was found that, despite the increase in deaths regionally, coronial referrals remained about 100 per month, a reduction in referral rate. The number undergoing PMCT rose from 28% to 74% of cases. Turnaround time remained the same. For cases triaged to PMCT, the need for subsequent autopsy increased from 7.9% to 15.8%. No significant changes were seen in diagnosis rates, including cardiac or respiratory. There was an increase in patients with coronary death without severe coronary calcification who underwent autopsy after PMCT. These may have been diagnosed by targeted coronary angiography. Fifty-three cases requiring toxicology/biochemistry had PMCT, with 38 having PMCT only. In 8/11 (72.7%) cases with normal PMCT and toxicology as the key diagnostic test, autopsy was performed prior to results. This suggests the pathology team were reluctant to risk an "unascertained" outcome. This study shows that it is possible to increase PMCT services by widening referral criteria and by limiting the use of enhanced imaging techniques, without significantly changing diagnosis rates of key diseases; however, selectively restarting targeted angiography may help avoid autopsy in some cases.
  • Current role of conventional radiography of sacroiliac joints in adults and juveniles with suspected axial spondyloarthritis: opinion from the ESSR arthritis and pediatric subcommittees

    Shah, Amit; Rennie, Winston (10/10/2023)
    This opinion article by the European Society of Musculoskeletal Radiology Arthritis and Pediatric Subcommittees discusses the current use of conventional radiography (CR) of the sacroiliac joints in adults and juveniles with suspected axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA). The strengths and limitations of CR compared with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) are presented.Based on the current literature and expert opinions, the subcommittees recognize the superior sensitivity of MRI to detect early sacroiliitis. In adults, supplementary pelvic radiography, low-dose CT, or synthetic CT may be needed to evaluate differential diagnoses. CR remains the method of choice to detect structural changes in patients with suspected late-stage axSpA or established disease and in patients with suspected concomitant hip or pubic symphysis involvement. In children, MRI is the imaging modality of choice because it can detect active as well as structural changes and is radiation free.
  • PET-CT for characterising TB infection (TBI) in immunocompetent subjects: a systematic review

    Kim, Jee Whang; Kamil, Anver; Haldar, Pranabashis (26/09/2023)
    Introduction. There is emerging evidence of a potential role for PET-CT scan as an imaging biomarker to characterise the spectrum of tuberculosis infection (TBI) in humans and animal models.Gap Statement. Synthesis of available evidence from current literature is needed to understand the utility of PET-CT for characterising TBI and how this may inform application of PET-CT in future TBI research.Aim. The aims of this review are to summarise the evidence of PET-CT scan use in immunocompetent hosts with TBI, and compare PET-CT features observed in humans and animal models.Methodology. MEDLINE, Embase and PubMed Central were searched to identify relevant publications. Studies were selected if they reported PET-CT features in human or animals with TBI. Studies were excluded if immune deficiency was present at the time of the initial PET-CT scan.Results. Six studies - four in humans and two in non-human primates (NHP) were included for analysis. All six studies used 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-d-glucose (2-[18F]FDG) PET-CT. Features of TBI were comparable between NHP and humans, with 2-[18F]FDG avid intrathoracic lymph nodes observed during early infection. Progressive TBI was characterised in NHP by increasing 2-[18F]FDG avidity and size of lesions. Two human studies suggested that PET-CT can discriminate between active TB and inactive TBI. However, data synthesis was generally limited by human studies including inconsistent and poorly characterised cohorts and the small number of eligible studies for review.Conclusion. Our review provides some evidence, limited primarily to non-human primate models, of PET-CT utility as a highly sensitive imaging modality to reveal and characterise meaningful metabolic and structural change in early TBI. The few human studies identified exhibit considerable heterogeneity. Larger prospective studies are needed recruiting well characterised cohorts with TBI and adopting a standardized PET-CT protocol, to better understand utility of this imaging biomarker to support future research.
  • A rare case of an intraneural ganglion cyst of the median nerve

    Shah, Amit (2023-09-11)
    Aim of the study: Intraneural ganglion cysts are a relatively uncommon type of ganglion cyst that can affect peripheral nerves. They are particularly rare in the upper limb, and even more so in the median nerve, with the vast majority of them occurring in the peroneal nerves. This paper aims to make the reader aware of this relatively uncommon condition. Case description: We report a case of a 41-year-old male who presented with a gradually progressing mass on the volar aspect of the wrist extending to the index finger. The nonspecific presentation as well as the rarity of the condition may make diagnosis challenging. The patient was referred for surgical management under a specialist peripheral nerve hand surgeon. Conclusions: Ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging as well as awareness of the typical imaging features of this entity are crucial in making the correct diagnosis as well as excluding other potential considerations such as neoplasm.
  • NICE 2022 guidelines on the management of melanoma: Update and implications

    Ramachandran, Sanjeev; Begaj, Ardit; Morgan, Bruno; Faust, Guy; Patel, Nakul; Jayarajan, Rajshree (2023-07-20)
    Aims: In July 2022, NICE updated the guidelines on the management of melanoma by lowering the number of follow-up appointments and sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) but increasing the number of scans. This study aims to evaluate the implications of executing the new guidelines in terms of cost-effectiveness and personnel. Methods: All patients newly diagnosed with melanoma in 2019 at a regional skin cancer specialist center were reviewed. Data were analyzed for their journey on an idealized pathway modeled over a 5-year follow-up period when adhering to both the previous and new guidelines. Differences in the management of melanoma were elucidated by comparing these changes. The cost was quantified on a perpatient basis and the financial implication on each department was considered. Results: One hundred and ten patients were diagnosed with melanoma in 2019, stages I-III. The changes ease the burden on plastic surgery and dermatology; however, increased pressure is faced by radiologists and histopathologists. An overall cost benefit of £141.85 perpatient was calculated, resulting in a decrease of 1.22 hospital visits on average and an increase in the time spent there (19.55 min). The additional expenses of implementing the new guidelines due to the added BRAF tests, CT, and ultrasound scans are outweighed by savings from the reduction in follow-up appointments and SLNB. Conclusion: The focus has shifted to less invasive procedures for lower melanoma stages and fewer follow-up appointments, at the expense of more genetic testing and imaging. This paper serves as a useful baseline for other centers to plan their service provision and resource allocation to adhere to the updated guidelines.
  • Validation of the supinator fat pad sign in radial head and neck fractures

    Hussein, Mohsin (2023-08-03)
    Objective: To assess the displacement of the supinator fat pad in radial head and neck fractures and to validate its significance. Material and methods: One hundred two adult patients from the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital, Birmingham, United Kingdom and Sultan Qaboos University Hospital, Muscat, Oman with confirmed radial head and/or neck fractures were included. Fractures were classified using the Mason-Johnston classification. The displacement of the supinator fat pad from the radius was measured on anterior-posterior (AP) and lateral radiographs and correlated to fracture classification. Results: The supinator fat pad was on average displaced by 10.6 mm and 13.8 mm from the radius on AP and lateral radiographs, respectively. The displacement of the fat pad progressively increased between non-displaced (Mason I) and severely comminuted (Mason III) fractures on both the AP (10.25 to 14.25 mm) and lateral (12.70 to 16.00 mm) projections. The progression of displacement on AP (p = 0.016) and on lateral (p = 0.007) projections was statistically significant. Fracture dislocation was not associated with increased fat pad displacement. Conclusion: The supinator fat pad sign is a useful adjunct in the assessment of radial head and neck fractures.
  • A new scoring system for differentiating malignant from benign “second-look” breast lesions detected by MRI in patients with known breast cancer

    Ziada, Karim; Sui, Michelle; Krupa, Jaroslaw (2023-04-21)
    Aim: To propose a scoring system made of reproducible and objective criteria to aid in differentiating malignant from benign "second-look" breast lesions detected at magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Materials and methods: Data were collected retrospectively for "second-look" lesions identified on breast MRI studies performed at the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust breast unit over a 2-year period (from January 2020 to January 2022). Ninety-five "second look" MRI-detected lesions were included in this retrospective study. Lesions were assessed according to margins, T2 signal, internal enhancement patterns, contrast kinetics, and diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) patterns. Results: Fifty-two per cent of the included lesions were confirmed at histopathology to be malignant. The most common contrast kinetics identified in malignant lesions was the plateau pattern followed by the washout pattern while the most common pattern in benign lesions was the progressive pattern. The apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) cut-off value for separating benign and malignant lesions at the unit was found to be 1.1 × 10-3 mm2/s. Based on the MRI features described above, a scoring system is suggested to help differentiate benign from malignant "second-look" lesions. According to the present results, setting a score of 2 or more points as an indication for biopsy was 100% reliable in identifying malignant lesions and avoiding biopsies in >30% of lesions. Conclusion: The suggested scoring system could avoid biopsy of >30% of the "second-look" lesions detected by MRI without missing any malignant lesions.
  • Exploring the acute effects of running on cerebral blood flow and food cue reactivity in healthy young men using functional magnetic resonance imaging

    Thompson, Julie; Davies, Melanie (2023-05-05)
    Acute exercise suppresses appetite and alters food-cue reactivity, but the extent exercise-induced changes in cerebral blood flow (CBF) influences the blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signal during appetite-related paradigms is not known. This study examined the impact of acute running on visual food-cue reactivity and explored whether such responses are influenced by CBF variability. In a randomised crossover design, 23 men (mean ± SD: 24 ± 4 years, 22.9 ± 2.1 kg/m2 ) completed fMRI scans before and after 60 min of running (68% ± 3% peak oxygen uptake) or rest (control). Five-minute pseudo-continuous arterial spin labelling fMRI scans were conducted for CBF assessment before and at four consecutive repeat acquisitions after exercise/rest. BOLD-fMRI was acquired during a food-cue reactivity task before and 28 min after exercise/rest. Food-cue reactivity analysis was performed with and without CBF adjustment. Subjective appetite ratings were assessed before, during and after exercise/rest. Exercise CBF was higher in grey matter, the posterior insula and in the region of the amygdala/hippocampus, and lower in the medial orbitofrontal cortex and dorsal striatum than control (main effect trial p ≤ .018). No time-by-trial interactions for CBF were identified (p ≥ .087). Exercise induced moderate-to-large reductions in subjective appetite ratings (Cohen's d = 0.53-0.84; p ≤ .024) and increased food-cue reactivity in the paracingulate gyrus, hippocampus, precuneous cortex, frontal pole and posterior cingulate gyrus. Accounting for CBF variability did not markedly alter detection of exercise-induced BOLD signal changes. Acute running evoked overall changes in CBF that were not time dependent and increased food-cue reactivity in regions implicated in attention, anticipation of reward, and episodic memory independent of CBF.
  • The pelican sign: Case series demonstrating a unique description of an anteriorly flipped bucket-handle meniscal tear of the knee

    Shah, Amit (2022-12-26)
    Introduction Bucket-handle tears (BHTs) of the menisci are not uncommon and can occur in isolation or in conjunction with other injuries. The torn fragment can be displaced within the intercondylar notch or flipped anteriorly. In case of anterior flipped fragment, appearances of such tears on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan have been described as various signs in literature (for example double posterior cruciate ligament sign, double delta sign) but mostly in the sagittal or coronal planes. Purpose The aim of this study was to describe a unique ancillary sign that helps to identify this injury on the axial MRI plane where the anterior flipped BHT figuratively resembles a "pelican bird." Materials and Methods A retrospective review of MRI sequences of 10 consecutive patients over a 3-month period referred following a traumatic knee injury with anterior flipped meniscal tears was performed. Demographic details, clinical indication, and other associated features on the MRI were correlated following the observation of characteristic MRI appearance of a BHT. Results All 10 patients (M:F = 7:3) with a mean age of 24.7 (17-38 years) presented following a twisting injury. 6 out of 10 patients had associated soft-tissue injuries in the knee visualized on the MRI. All patients demonstrated the distinctive "pelican bird" sign on the axial sequences of anterior flipped BHT of either menisci. This was not present with BHTs with displaced fragment within the intercondylar notch. Conclusion We conclude that the "pelican sign" on an axial sequence when present correlates well with a BHT and its anterior displaced/flipped meniscal fragment. This ancillary sign can complement other previously described signs on different MRI sequences used to confirm a displaced BHT.
  • Opportunistic screening for osteoporosis by abdominal CT in a British population

    Vadera, Sonam; Osborne, Timothy; Shah, Vikas; Stephenson, James (2023-04-01)
    Background: It has previously been shown that CT scans performed for other indications can be used to identify patients with osteoporosis. This has not yet been tested in a British population. We sought to evaluate the use of vertebral CT attenuation measures for predicting osteoporosis in a British cohort, using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) as a reference standard. Methods: Patients who underwent abdominal CT in 2018 and concomitantly underwent DEXA within a six-month interval were retrospectively included. CT attenuation values in Hounsfield units (HU) were measured by placement of a region-of-interest at the central portion of the L1 vertebral body and then compared to their corresponding DEXA score. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were generated to evaluate the performance of a logistic regression model and to determine sensitivity and specificity thresholds. Results: 536 patients (394 females, mean age 65.8) were included, of which 174 had DEXA-defined osteoporosis. L1 attenuation measures were significantly different (p < 0.01) between the three DEXA-defined groups of osteoporosis (118 HU), osteopenia (143 HU) and normal bone density (178 HU). The area under the ROC curve was 0.74 (95% CI 0.69-0.78). A threshold of 169 HU was 90% sensitive, and a threshold of 104 HU was 90% specific for diagnosing osteoporosis. Conclusions: Routine abdominal CT can be used to opportunistically screen for osteoporosis without additional cost or radiation exposure. The thresholds identified in this study are comparable with previous studies in other populations. We recommend radiologists engage with primary care and rheumatology providers to determine appropriate cut-off values for further investigation.
  • Evaluation of an AI model to assess future breast cancer risk

    Al-Attar, Miaad (2023-06-13)
    Background Accurate breast cancer risk assessment after a negative screening result could enable better strategies for early detection. Purpose To evaluate a deep learning algorithm for risk assessment based on digital mammograms. Materials and Methods A retrospective observational matched case-control study was designed using the OPTIMAM Mammography Image Database from the National Health Service Breast Screening Programme in the United Kingdom from February 2010 to September 2019. Patients with breast cancer (cases) were diagnosed following a mammographic screening or between two triannual screening rounds. Controls were matched based on mammography device, screening site, and age. The artificial intelligence (AI) model only used mammograms at screening before diagnosis. The primary objective was to assess model performance, with a secondary objective to assess heterogeneity and calibration slope. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) was estimated for 3-year risk. Heterogeneity according to cancer subtype was assessed using a likelihood ratio interaction test. Statistical significance was set at P < .05. Results Analysis included patients with screen-detected (median age, 60 years [IQR, 55-65 years]; 2044 female, including 1528 with invasive cancer and 503 with ductal carcinoma in situ [DCIS]) or interval (median age, 59 years [IQR, 53-65 years]; 696 female, including 636 with invasive cancer and 54 with DCIS) breast cancer and 1:1 matched controls, each with a complete set of mammograms at the screening preceding diagnosis. The AI model had an overall AUC of 0.68 (95% CI: 0.66, 0.70), with no evidence of a significant difference between interval and screen-detected (AUC, 0.69 vs 0.67; P = .085) cancer. The calibration slope was 1.13 (95% CI: 1.01, 1.26). There was similar performance for the detection of invasive cancer versus DCIS (AUC, 0.68 vs 0.66; P = .057). The model had higher performance for advanced cancer risk (AUC, 0.72 ≥stage II vs 0.66
  • Factors influencing sonographer-led bowel ultrasound services in the UK

    Babington, Emmanuel (2023-02-09)
    Introduction: There is a growing understanding of the potency of bowel ultrasound leading to an increasing application of ultrasound in examining different bowel conditions. However, sonographers' involvement in bowel ultrasound is under-researched. This study investigated the factors influencing sonographers' experience in adult bowel ultrasound. Methods: A convenience sampling method was used to promote the study in April 2021. A mixed methods online questionnaire was utilised to explore the participants' views. Quantitative data were analysed using descriptive analysis on Excel, while qualitative data were analysed using inductive thematic analysis. Results: Almost half of the participants (53%; n = 16) indicated low confidence in using ultrasound to examine the bowel for abnormalities. While 63% of the participants reported having high confidence in examining the bowel for suspected appendicitis, 70% (n = 21) reported low confidence in carrying out ultrasound in examining Inflammatory bowel disease. Furthermore, 23 participants (77%) indicated a high interest in bowel ultrasound training. Qualitative findings revealed mixed opinions on bowel ultrasound practice. Factors influencing sonographers' experience are the need for more training opportunities, preference for other imaging modalities, management challenges, radiologists' influence, sonographers' perspectives, and positive perspectives. Conclusion: Several factors influence sonographers' confidence in using ultrasound for bowel abnormalities. However, the findings emphasise the need for more research into the future design and implementation of sonographers' bowel ultrasound training. Implication for practice: This study brings new insight to an under-researched area on the scope of sonography practice, highlighting some sonographers' experience, opinions, and involvement in bowel ultrasound. It further strengthens the argument for more training to be made available to sonographers on bowel ultrasound.
  • Ankle and foot: Focus on inflammatory disease

    Moorthy, Arumugam; Rennie, Winston
    The ankle and foot have numerous bones and complex joints that can be affected by several types of inflammatory arthritis with different patterns and various radiologic signs, depending on the phase of the disease. Involvement of these joints is most frequently seen in peripheral spondyloarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis in adults and juvenile idiopathic arthritis in children. Although radiographs are a mainstay in the diagnostic process, ultrasonography and especially magnetic resonance imaging allow early diagnosis and are crucial diagnostic tools. Some diseases have typical features based on target populations (e.g., adults versus children, men versus women), but others may have overlapping imaging characteristics. We highlight key diagnostic features and describe appropriate investigations to guide clinicians toward the correct diagnosis and provide support during disease monitoring.
  • The use and efficacy of FFR-CT: Real-world multicenter audit of clinical data with cost analysis

    Deshpande, Aparna; Elfawal, Sara
    Background: Fractional flow reserve-computed tomography (FFR-CT) is endorsed by UK and U.S. chest pain guidelines, but its clinical effectiveness and cost benefit in real-world practice are unknown. Objectives: To audit the use of FFR-CT in clinical practice against England's National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidance and assess its diagnostic accuracy and cost. Methods: A multicenter audit was undertaken covering the 3 years when FFR-CT was centrally funded in England. For coronary computed tomographic angiograms (CCTAs) submitted for FFR-CT analysis, centers provided data on symptoms, CCTA and FFR-CT findings, and subsequent management. Audit standards included using FFR-CT only in patients with stable chest pain and equivocal stenosis (50%-69%). Diagnostic accuracy was evaluated against invasive FFR, when performed. Follow-up for nonfatal myocardial infarction and all-cause mortality was undertaken. The cost of an FFR-CT strategy was compared to alternative stress imaging pathways using cost analysis modeling. Results: A total of 2,298 CCTAs from 12 centers underwent FFR-CT analysis. Stable chest pain was the main symptom in 77%, and 40% had equivocal stenosis. Positive and negative predictive values of FFR-CT were 49% and 76%, respectively. A total of 46 events (2%) occurred over a mean follow-up period of 17 months; FFR-CT (cutoff: 0.80) was not predictive. The FFR-CT strategy costs £2,102 per patient compared with an average of £1,411 for stress imaging. Conclusions: In clinical practice, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence criteria for using FFR-CT were met in three-fourths of patients for symptoms and 40% for stenosis. FFR-CT had a low positive predictive value, making its use potentially more expensive than conventional stress imaging strategies.

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