Journal Club: November 2010

Br J Radiol. 2010 Nov 19. [Epub ahead of print]

CT colonography: computer-assisted detection of colorectal cancer.

Robinson C, Halligan S, Iinuma G, Topping W, Punwani S, Honeyfield L, Taylor SA.


Objectives: Computer-aided detection (CAD) for CT colonography (CTC) has been developed to detect benign polyps in asymptomatic patients. We aimed to determine whether such a CAD system can also detect cancer in symptomatic patients. Methods: CTC data from 137 symptomatic patients subsequently proven to have colorectal cancer were analysed by a CAD system at 4 different sphericity settings: 0, 50, 75 and 100. CAD prompts were classified by an observer as either true positive if overlapping a cancer or false positive if elsewhere. Colonoscopic data were used to aid matching. Results: Of 137 cancers, CAD identified 124 (90.5%), 122 (89.1%), 119 (86.9%) and 102 (74.5%) at a sphericity of 0, 50, 75 and 100 respectively. A substantial proportion of cancers were detected on either the prone or supine acquisition alone. Of 125 patients with prone and supine acquisitions, 39.3%, 38.3%, 43.2% and 50.5% of cancers were detected on a single acquisition at a sphericity of 0, 50, 75 and 100 respectively. CAD detected three cancers missed by radiologists at the original clinical interpretation. False-positive prompts decreased with increasing sphericity value (median 65, 57, 45, 24 per patient at values of 0, 50, 75, 100 respectively) but many patients were poorly prepared. Conclusion: CAD can detect symptomatic colorectal cancer but must be applied to both prone and supine acquisitions for best performance.