Can the Signal-to-Noise Ratio of Choline in Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy Reflect the Aggressiveness of Endometrial Cancer?

Published:January 29, 2015DOI:

      Rationale and Objectives

      To differentiate endometrial cancer (ECa) from benign lesions in endometrial or in submucosa (BLs-ESm), and investigate whether the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of choline-containing compounds (Cho) obtained from three-dimensional 1H magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) is associated with the aggressiveness of ECa.

      Materials and Methods

      Thirty-three patients with ECa and 15 patients with BLs-ESm underwent preoperative multivoxel 1H MRS at 3 T MR. The amplitude of Cho peak of each voxel was recorded, and the corresponding SNR of Cho peak (ChoSNR) was calculated. The maximum ChoSNR (max ChoSNR) for each lesion was identified. The max ChoSNR of ECa and BLs-ESm, as well as type I ECa and type II ECa, was compared. The relationship between max ChoSNR and pathologic characteristics of tumors, including tumor grade, stage, type, and tumor size, was analyzed.


      The mean max ChoSNR (±standard deviation [SD]) was 30.93 ± 16.89 for ECa and 10.40 ± 3.07 for BLs-ESm (P < .001). The mean max ChoSNR for type II ECa (48.54 ± 21.46) was higher than that for type I ECa (26.19 ± 12.02, P = .001). There were no significant differences among different grades (P = .449). The Spearman coefficient between max ChoSNR and stage was 0.423 (P = .014); the difference existed only between Ia and III ECa (P = .048). The Pearson coefficient between ChoSNR and tumor size was 0.515 (P = .002).


      The max ChoSNR obtained from MRS can differentiate ECa from BLs and type I ECa and type II ECa, but cannot differentiate between each grade ECa and each International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage ECa. However, max ChoSNR increased with the increase in International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage and size of ECa.

      Key Words

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