Clinical Trial
Comparative Study
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Comprehensive MR Urography Protocol: Equally Good Diagnostic Performance and Enhanced Visibility of the Upper Urinary Tract Compared to Triple-Phase CT Urography.

OBJECTIVES: To prospectively compare the diagnostic performance and the visualization of the upper urinary tract (UUT) using a comprehensive 3.0T- magnetic resonance urography (MRU) protocol versus triple-phase computed tomography urography (CTU).

METHODS: During the study period (January-2014 through December-2015), all consecutive patients in our tertiary university hospital scheduled by a urologist for CTU to exclude UUT malignancy were invited to participate. Diagnostic performance and visualization scores of 3.0T-MRU were compared to CTU using Wilcoxon matched-pairs test.

RESULTS: Twenty patients (39 UUT excreting units) were evaluated. 3.0T-MRU and CTU achieved equal diagnostic performances. The benign etiology of seven UUT obstructions was clarified equally with both methods. Another two urinary tract malignant tumors and one benign extraurinary tumor were detected and confirmed. Diagnostic visualization was slightly better in the intrarenal cavity areas with CTU but worsened towards distal ureter. MRU showed consistently slightly better visualization of the ureter. In the comparison, full 100% visualizations were detected in all areas in 93.6% (with 3.0T-MRU) and 87.2% (with CTU) and >75% visualization in 100% (3.0T-MRU) and 93.6% (CTU). Mean CTU effective radiation dose was 9.2 mSv.

CONCLUSIONS: Comprehensive 3.0T-MRU is an accurate imaging modality achieving comparable performance with CTU; since it does not entail exposure to radiation, it has the potential to become the primary investigation technique in selected patients.


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