CT is unreliable in locoregional staging of early colon cancer: A nationwide registry-based study

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskriftPeer review


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: The option to treat early colon cancer (CC) with local resection, as well as trials investigating neoadjuvant treatment, has increased the importance of identifying early-stage disease in the workup. Most CC patients are T- and N-staged preoperatively with CT, although its reliability in staging early CC remains elusive. The aim of this study was to investigate CT-staging accuracy in early CC by evaluating pT and pN stages in patients staged as cT1-2, and cT and cN stages in patients with pT1 tumors.

METHODS: Retrospective population-based cohort study on data from the nationwide Swedish colorectal cancer registry on all CC patients staged as cT1-2 and all patients with pT1 undergoing surgical resection 2009-2018. CT-acquired T- and N-stages were compared with final histopathology. Factors potentially influencing accuracy were analyzed with uni- and multivariate logistic regression.

RESULTS: Computed tomography (CT) staged 4849 patients as cT1-2, whereas 2445 (50%) were pT3 and 453 (9%) pT4. Positive predictive value of the cT1-2 stage was 40%. Of 1401 pT1 patients, 624 (45%) were staged as cT1-2, 139 (10%) as cT3, 15 (1%) as cT4 and 623 (44%) as cTx. In all, 1474 (30%) of the cT1-2 patients were pN+, whereas CT staged 1062 (72%) as cN0. A total of 771 patients were staged as cN+, whereas 403 (52%) were pN0. Overall accuracy in determining N+ was 67%, with 26% sensitivity and 88% specificity. Positive and negative predictive values in determining N+ were 48% and 73%, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: This nationwide population-based study shows that CT-staging carries a substantial risk of understaging locally advanced tumors as cT1-2 and pT1 tumors as cTx, in addition to poor N-staging. Thus, CT obtained T- and N-staging should not be used for deciding treatment strategies in early CC.

Sidor (från-till)33-40
Antal sidor8
TidskriftScandinavian Journal of Surgery
Tidigt onlinedatum2022 nov. 15
StatusPublished - 2023

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Kirurgi
  • Cancer och onkologi


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