Multiparametric MRI for differentiation of radiation necrosis from recurrent tumor in patients with treated glioblastoma

Kambiz Nael, Adam H. Bauer, Adilia Hormigo, Michael Lemole, Isabelle M. Germano, Josep Puig, Baldassarre Stea

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE. Differentiation of radiation necrosis (RN) from recurrent tumor (RT) in treated patients with glioblastoma remains a diagnostic challenge. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the diagnostic performance of multiparametric MRI in distinguishing RN from RT in patients with glioblastoma, with the use of a combination of MR perfusion and diffusion parameters. MATERIALS AND METHODS. Patients with glioblastoma who had a new enhancing mass develop after completing standard treatment were retrospectively evaluated. Apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC), volume transfer constant (Ktrans), and relative cerebral blood volume (rCBV) values were calculated from the MR images on which the enhancing lesions first appeared. Repeated measure of analysis, logistic regression, and ROC analysis were performed. RESULTS. Of a total of 70 patients evaluated, 46 (34 with RT and 12 with RN) met our inclusion criteria. Patients with RT had significantly higher mean rCBV (p < 0.001) and Ktrans (p = 0.006) values and lower ADC values (p = 0.004), compared with patients with RN. The overall diagnostic accuracy was 85.8% for rCBV, 75.5% for Ktrans, and 71.3% for ADC values. The logistic regression model showed a significant contribution of rCBV (p = 0.024) and Ktrans (p = 0.040) as independent imaging classifiers for differentiation of RT from RN. Combined use of rCBV and Ktrans at threshold values of 2.2 and 0.08 min-1, respectively, improved the overall diagnostic accuracy to 92.8%. CONCLUSION. In patients with treated glioblastoma, rCBV outperforms ADC and Ktrans as a single imaging classifier to predict recurrent tumor versus radiation necrosis; however, the combination of rCBV and Ktrans may be used to improve overall diagnostic accuracy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18-23
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Glioblastoma
  • MR diffusion
  • MR perfusion
  • Posttreatment change
  • Radiation necrosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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