Genitourinary applications of diffusion-weighted MR imaging in the pelvis

Thoeny, Harriet C; Forstner, Rosemarie; De Keyzer, Frederik (2012). Genitourinary applications of diffusion-weighted MR imaging in the pelvis. Radiology, 263(2), pp. 326-42. Oak Brook, Ill.: Radiological Society of North America RSNA 10.1148/radiol.12110446

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Diffusion-weighted (DW) magnetic resonance (MR) imaging has a large number of potential clinical applications in the female and male pelvis and can easily be added to any routine MR protocol. In the female pelvis, DW imaging allows improvement of staging in endometrial and cervical cancer, especially in locally advanced disease and in patients in whom contrast medium administration should be avoided. It can also be helpful in characterizing complex adnexal masses and in depicting recurrent tumor after treatment of various gynecologic malignancies. DW imaging shows promising results in monitoring treatment response in patients undergoing radiation therapy of cervical cancer. An increase in apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values of responders precedes changes in size and may therefore allow early assessment of treatment success. In the male pelvis, the detection of prostate cancer in the peripheral zone is relatively easier than in the central gland based on the underlying ADC values, whereas overlapping values reported in the central gland still need further research. DW imaging might also be applied in the noninvasive evaluation of bladder cancer to differentiate between superficial and muscle-invasive tumors. Initial promising results have been reported in differentiating benign from malignant pelvic lymph nodes based on the ADC values; however, larger-scale studies will be needed to allow the detection of lymph node metastases in an individual patient. Prerequisites for successfully performing DW imaging of the female and male pelvis are standardization of the DW imaging technique, including the choice of b values, administration of an antiperistaltic drug, and comparison of DW findings with those of morphologic MR imaging.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Further Contribution)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Radiology, Neuroradiology and Nuclear Medicine (DRNN) > Institute of Diagnostic, Interventional and Paediatric Radiology

UniBE Contributor:

Thöny, Harriet C.




Radiological Society of North America RSNA




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Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:39

Last Modified:

17 Mar 2015 21:32

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URI: (FactScience: 223170)

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