Comparison of LI-RADS 2018 and KLCA-NCC 2018 for noninvasive diagnosis of hepatocellular carcinoma using magnetic resonance imaging.

Research paper by Sunyoung S Lee, Seung-Seob SS Kim, Dong Ryul DR Chang, Hyerim H Kim, Myeong-Jin MJ Kim

Indexed on: 05 Jun '20Published on: 05 Jun '20Published in: Clinical and molecular hepatology


This study aimed to compare the diagnostic performances of Liver Imaging Reporting and Data System (LI-RADS) 2018 and Korean Liver Cancer Association-National Cancer Center (KLCA-NCC) 2018 criteria on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for the noninvasive diagnosis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in high-risk patients. This retrospective study included 273 treatment-naïve patients (71 patients with extracellular contrast agent [ECA]-MRI and 202 patients with hepatobiliary agent [HBA]-MRI; 352 lesions including 263 HCCs) with high risk of HCC who underwent contrast-enhanced MRI between 2016 and 2017. Two readers evaluated all lesions according to the criteria of LI-RADS 2018 and KLCA-NCC 2018. The per-lesion diagnostic performances were compared using the generalized estimating equation method. On ECA-MRI, the sensitivity and specificity of LI-RADS 2018 and KLCA-NCC 2018 were not significantly different (LR-5 vs. definite HCC: 75.8% vs. 69.4%, P=0.095 and 95.8% vs. 95.8%, P>0.999; LR-5/4 vs. definite/probable HCC: 87.1% vs.83.9%, P=0.313 and 87.5% vs. 91.7%, P=0.307). On HBA-MRI, definite HCC of KLCA-NCC 2018 showed significantly higher sensitivity (79.1% vs. 68.2%, P<0.001) than LR-5 of LI-RADS 2018 without a significant difference in specificity (93.9% vs. 95.4%, P=0.314). Definite/probable HCC of KLCA-NCC 2018 had higher specificity (92.3% vs. 80.0%, P=0.003) than LR-5/4 of LI-RADS 2018. The sensitivity was lower for definite/probable HCC than for LR-5/4 without statistical significance (85.6% vs. 88.1%, P=0.057). On ECA-MRI, LI-RADS 2018 and KLCA-NCC 2018 showed comparable diagnostic performances. On HBA-MRI, definite HCC of KLCA-NCC 2018 provided better sensitivity than LR-5 category of LI-RADS 2018 without compromising the specificity, while definite/probable HCC of KLCA-NCC 2018 revealed higher specificity than LR-5/4 of LI-RADS 2018 for diagnosing HCC.