Frequency and significance of incidental liver lesions on MR enterography in adult patients


      • Seventy-nine MRE (22.4%) described liver lesions and follow-up imaging was recommended in 4/79 (5.1%).
      • All incidental liver lesions identified on MRE in our cohort were benign.



      To evaluate the frequency and significance of incidental liver lesions identified on MR enterography (MRE) examinations to determine if dedicated sequences for liver evaluation are necessary in the routine MRE protocol.


      A retrospective departmental database search identified 353 adult (212 women and 141 men; mean [±SD] age, 41.4 [17.0] years; range 18.1–91.9 years) MRE examinations performed in 2017. Radiology reports were reviewed for the presence and characterization of liver lesions, follow-up recommendation, and known malignancy. Follow-up cross-sectional imaging reports were reviewed for liver lesion stability. A senior abdominal radiologist with expertise in liver imaging categorized liver lesions as benign, indeterminate, or malignant and re-characterized indeterminate lesions using follow-up imaging as benign or malignant.


      Seventy-nine MRE (22.4%) described liver lesions and follow-up imaging was recommended in 4/79 (5.1%). Seventy-six liver lesions (96.2%) were characterized as benign (cysts/hemangiomas) on routine interpretation and expert review. One of these was recommended for follow-up imaging on initial report, which was characterized as hemangioma by expert review. The remaining 3 lesions (3.8%) were characterized as indeterminate both by initial report and expert radiologist review but re-characterized as benign after reviewing follow-up examinations.


      All incidental liver lesions identified on MRE in our cohort were benign. Therefore, additional sequences evaluating the liver are unnecessary for routine MRE.


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