The role of diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging in pediatric brain tumors
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Diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) may enhance the radiographic diagnosis of pediatric brain tumors. This study reviews the DWI properties of pediatric brain tumors at our institution and examines their relationship to tumor grade and type.
Materials and methods
The preoperative DWI and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) characteristics of brain tumors in 41 children were compared with histologic diagnosis. Signal characteristics on DWI and ADC maps correlated well with tumor grade. High-grade lesions were hyperintense on DWI and hypointense on ADC maps. Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value were 70, 100, 100, and 91%, respectively. Signal characteristics did not differ among different tumors of the same grade. All primitive neuroectodermal tumors showed diffusion restriction whereas none of the ependymomas did.
The signal characteristics on DWI and ADC maps appeared to be strongly correlated to grade in pediatric brain tumors and they may assist with preoperative diagnostic predictions.
KeywordsPediatric brain tumors Magnetic resonance imaging Diffusion-weighted imaging Apparent diffusion coefficient
The authors thank Kristin Kraus for her editorial assistance in preparing this paper.
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