Peribiliary liver metastases MR findings

Vincenza Granata, Roberta Fusco, Orlando Catalano, Antonio Avallone, Maddalena Leongito, Francesco Izzo, Antonella Petrillo

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We described magnetic resonance (MR) features of peribiliary metastasis and of periductal infiltrative cholangiocarcinoma. We assessed 35 patients, with peribiliary lesions, using MR 4-point confidence scale. T1-weighted (T1-W), T2-weighted (T2-W) and diffusion-weighted images (DWI) signal intensity, enhancement pattern during arterial, portal, equilibrium and hepatobiliary phase were assessed. We identified 24 patients with periductal-infiltrating cholangiocellular carcinoma. The lesions in 34 patients appeared as a single tissue, while in a single patient, the lesions appeared as multiple individual lesions. According to the confidence scale, the median value was 4 for T2-W, 4 for DWI, 3.6 for T1-W in phase, 3.6 for T1-W out phase, 3 for MRI arterial phase, 3.2 for MRI portal phase, 3.2 for MRI equilibrium phase and 3.6 for MRI hepatobiliary phase. According to Bismuth classification, all lesions were type IV. In total, 19 (54.3%) lesions were periductal, 15 (42.9%) lesions were intraperiductal, and 1 (2.8%) lesion was periductal intrahepatic. All lesions showed hypointense signal in T1-W and in ADC maps and hyperintense signal in T2-W and DWI. All lesions showed a progressive contrast enhancement. There was no significant difference in signal intensity and contrast enhancement among all metastases and among all metastases with respect to CCCs, for all imaging acquisitions (p value >0.05). MRI is the method of choice for biliary tract tumors thanks to the possibility to obtain morphological and functional evaluations. T2-W and DW sequences have highest diagnostic performance. MRI does not allow a correct differential diagnosis among different histological types of metastasis and between metastases and CCC.

Original languageEnglish
Article number124
JournalMedical Oncology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2017


  • Biliary tree
  • Liver metastasis
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Peribiliary metastasis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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