, Volume 45, Issue 1, pp 153–155 | Cite as

Elastographic presentation of medullary thyroid carcinoma

  • Massimiliano AndrioliEmail author
  • Pierpaolo Trimboli
  • Stefano Amendola
  • Stefano Valabrega
  • Nobuhiro Fukunari
  • Moro Mirella
  • Luca Persani
Research Letter


Aim of the study was to evaluate the elastographic appearance of medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) by a retrospective evaluation of 18 nodules histologically proven as MTC. Free-hand qualitative elastography was performed using Hitachi Logos EUB 7500. The elasticity score (ES), was assessed based on a colour elastogram, the blue colour being correlated with hard tissue, red colour with soft tissue, and green with intermediate hardness. Nodules were classified into four classes. A alleged diagnosis of malignancy was assigned to nodules with ES3 or 4 and a presumptive diagnosis of benignity was assigned to nodules with an ES1 or 2. More than half (55.6 %) of MTCs have a low-intermediate grade of elasticity. The hardest lesions (ES4) were those with ultrasonographic features highly suspicious for malignancy. In conclusion, most of MTCs present an elastographic pattern of benignity. Therefore, qualitative elastography does not add useful information in pointing out MTC on the basis of its hardness. Our data suggest a marginal role for this technique in MTC evaluation.


Medullary carcinoma Thyroid Elastosonography Elastography 


Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

Ethical standard

All patients gave their written informed consent according to the each local Ethics Committee, and the guidelines of the Declaration of Helsinki.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Massimiliano Andrioli
    • 1
    Email author
  • Pierpaolo Trimboli
    • 2
  • Stefano Amendola
    • 2
  • Stefano Valabrega
    • 3
  • Nobuhiro Fukunari
    • 4
  • Moro Mirella
    • 1
  • Luca Persani
    • 1
    • 5
  1. 1.Division of Endocrine and Metabolic DiseasesOspedale San Luca, IRCCS, Istituto Auxologico ItalianoMilanItaly
  2. 2.Section of Endocrinology and DiabetologyOspedale IsraeliticoRomeItaly
  3. 3.Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, Ospedale S. AndreaSapienza UniversityRomeItaly
  4. 4.Department of SurgeryShowa University School of Medicine, Yokohama Northern HospitalYokohamaJapan
  5. 5.Department of Clinical Sciences and Community HealthUniversità degli Studi di MilanoMilanItaly

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