Peripheral intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) is a fairly uncommon type of cancer in Italy which may be misdiagnosed as a metastasis from extrahepatic adenocarcinoma. In all, 22 cases of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma were diagnosed at the Radiology Department of the University of Brescia, Italy, from 1989 to 1994. The patients were 15 men and 7 women and their age ranged 30-77 years. Most of them underwent US examinations because of abdominal pain, weight loss or a general malaise and, less frequently, for signs of cholestasis. Hepatic cirrhosis was found in 8 patients. US showed a single nodular lesion with irregular margins in 6 cases and a large nodule with adjacent smaller satellite nodules in 12 cases. In the other 4 subjects, an infiltrative and diffuse lesion with no apparent nodules was observed. US showed hypoechoic lesions in 17 cases and both hypo- and hyperechoic areas in the other patients. The main nodular lesion was 1-3 cm in diameter in 2 cases, 3-10 cm in 15 and over 10 cm in 6 cases. Both hepatic lobes were involved in 14 patients. Twenty-one of 22 patients were submitted to CT and 3 to MR examinations. Both techniques confirmed US findings of an intrahepatic tumor but they did not help locating its origin in the intrahepatic biliary tract. Therefore, every patient was submitted to US-guided fine needle biopsy which allowed the correct diagnosis to be made in 12 cases. The remaining 10 patients had an initial diagnosis of adenocarcinoma metastases and only further studies of the histologic specimens, performed after a series of useless and negative exams (e.g., barium enema and endoscopy), allowed ICC to be correctly diagnosed. Since no typical pattern of this type of cancer can be observed with US, CT or MR examinations, we suggest that US-guided fine needle biopsy be used as the method of choice, which however needs a fruitful cooperation between the radiologist and the pathologist.
|Translated title of the contribution||Peripheral intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma. Role of diagnostic imaging techniques and fine needle biopsy|
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 1996|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging