Context: A tendency to grow has been reported in adrenal incidentalomas. However, long-term data regarding attenuation value, a measure of lipid content, are not available. Aim: This study aims to collect radiological data (diameter in mm and attenuation value in Hounsfield units, HU) with computed tomography (CT) in adrenal incidentalomas, in order to compare baseline characteristics with the last follow-up imaging. Design: This is a longitudinal study which included patients with a new diagnosis of adrenal incidentaloma, evaluated from January 2002 to June 2020. Setting: Referral University-Hospital center. Patients: Two hundred seventy-seven patients with 355 different cortical adenomas (baseline group) were evaluated at the first outpatient visit; the follow-up cohort consists of 181 patients with 234 adenomas (12–175 months after baseline). Inclusion criteria were conservative management and radiological features able to minimize malignancy or risk of progression. Main Outcome Measure: CT modification according to endocrine function: autonomous cortisol secretion (ACS) if cortisol >50 nmol/L after 1-mg dexamethasone test (DST). Results: At baseline CT, mean diameter was 18.7 mm and attenuation value was 0.8 HU (higher in ACS, 66 cases >10 HU), without modification in early imaging (12–36 months). The size increased over time (r = 0.289), achieving the largest differences after at least 60 months of follow-up (mean diameter, +2 mm; attenuation value, −4 HU), combined with a reduction in the attenuation value (r = −0.195, especially in patients with ACS). Lipid-poor adenomas (>10 HU) presented a reduced cortisol suppression after 1-mg DST, an increase in size and the largest decrease in attenuation value during follow-up. Univariate analysis confirmed that larger adenomas presented reduced suppression after DST and increase in size during follow-up. Conclusions: Growth is clinically modest in adrenal incidentaloma: the first follow-up CT 5 years after baseline is a reasonable choice, especially in ACS. Mean density is increased in patients with ACS and overt hypercortisolism. Mean density reduces during follow-up in all adrenal adenomas, suggesting an increase in lipid content, especially in those with ACS.

Attenuation Value in Adrenal Incidentalomas: A Longitudinal Study

Ceccato F.;Tizianel I.;Voltan G.;Maggetto G.;Merante Boschin I.;Quaia E.;Crimi' F.;Scaroni C.
2021

Abstract

Context: A tendency to grow has been reported in adrenal incidentalomas. However, long-term data regarding attenuation value, a measure of lipid content, are not available. Aim: This study aims to collect radiological data (diameter in mm and attenuation value in Hounsfield units, HU) with computed tomography (CT) in adrenal incidentalomas, in order to compare baseline characteristics with the last follow-up imaging. Design: This is a longitudinal study which included patients with a new diagnosis of adrenal incidentaloma, evaluated from January 2002 to June 2020. Setting: Referral University-Hospital center. Patients: Two hundred seventy-seven patients with 355 different cortical adenomas (baseline group) were evaluated at the first outpatient visit; the follow-up cohort consists of 181 patients with 234 adenomas (12–175 months after baseline). Inclusion criteria were conservative management and radiological features able to minimize malignancy or risk of progression. Main Outcome Measure: CT modification according to endocrine function: autonomous cortisol secretion (ACS) if cortisol >50 nmol/L after 1-mg dexamethasone test (DST). Results: At baseline CT, mean diameter was 18.7 mm and attenuation value was 0.8 HU (higher in ACS, 66 cases >10 HU), without modification in early imaging (12–36 months). The size increased over time (r = 0.289), achieving the largest differences after at least 60 months of follow-up (mean diameter, +2 mm; attenuation value, −4 HU), combined with a reduction in the attenuation value (r = −0.195, especially in patients with ACS). Lipid-poor adenomas (>10 HU) presented a reduced cortisol suppression after 1-mg DST, an increase in size and the largest decrease in attenuation value during follow-up. Univariate analysis confirmed that larger adenomas presented reduced suppression after DST and increase in size during follow-up. Conclusions: Growth is clinically modest in adrenal incidentaloma: the first follow-up CT 5 years after baseline is a reasonable choice, especially in ACS. Mean density is increased in patients with ACS and overt hypercortisolism. Mean density reduces during follow-up in all adrenal adenomas, suggesting an increase in lipid content, especially in those with ACS.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3413334
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