JOURNAL ARTICLE

Contrast-enhanced harmonic endoscopic ultrasound in solid lesions of the pancreas: results of a pilot study

B Napoleon, M V Alvarez-Sanchez, R Gincoul, B Pujol, C Lefort, V Lepilliez, M Labadie, J C Souquet, P E Queneau, J Y Scoazec, J A Chayvialle, T Ponchon
Endoscopy 2010, 42 (7): 564-70
20593334

BACKGROUND AND STUDY AIMS: Distinguishing pancreatic adenocarcinoma from other pancreatic masses remains challenging with current imaging techniques. This prospective study aimed to evaluate the accuracy of a new procedure, imaging the microcirculation pattern of the pancreas by contrast-enhanced harmonic endoscopic ultrasound (CEH-EUS) with a new Olympus prototype echo endoscope.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: 35 patients presenting with solid pancreatic lesions were prospectively enrolled. All patients had conventional B mode and power Doppler EUS. After an intravenous bolus injection of 2.4 ml of a second-generation ultrasound contrast agent (SonoVue) CEH-EUS was then performed with a new Olympus prototype echo endoscope (xGF-UCT 180). The microvascular pattern was compared with the final diagnosis based on the pathological examination of specimens from surgery or EUS-guided fine-needle aspiration (EUS-FNA) or on follow-up for at least 12 months.

RESULTS: The final diagnoses were: 18 adenocarcinomas, 9 neuroendocrine tumors, 7 chronic pancreatitis, and 1 stromal tumor. Power Doppler failed to display microcirculation, whereas harmonic imaging demonstrated it in all cases. Out of 18 lesions with a hypointense signal on CEH-EUS, 16 were adenocarcinomas. The sensitivity, specificity, negative predictive value (NPV), positive predictive value (PPV), and accuracy of hypointensity for diagnosing pancreatic adenocarcinoma were 89 %, 88 %, 88 %, 89 %, and 88.5 %, compared with corresponding values of 72 %, 100 %, 77 %, 100 %, and 86 % for EUS-FNA. Of five adenocarcinomas with false-negative results at EUS-FNA, four had a hypointense echo signal at CEH-EUS.

CONCLUSIONS: CEH-EUS with the new Olympus prototype device successfully visualizes the microvascular pattern in pancreatic solid lesions, and may be useful for distinguishing adenocarcinomas from other pancreatic masses.

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