JOURNAL OF CLINICAL IMAGING SCIENCE, vol.6, 2016 (ESCI)
Aim: The aim of this study is to test the diagnostic success of strain elastography in distinguishing benign from malignant thyroid nodules. Materials and Methods: The size, echogenicity, and halo integrity of 293 thyroid nodules and the presence of microcalcification in these nodules were evaluated on gray-scale examination. Doppler characteristics and elastography patterns were also evaluated and recorded. Nodules were classified in four categories (patterns 1-4) based on elastographic examination. Results: According to the cytopathological findings, 222 nodules were benign, and 71 nodules were malignant. The risk of a nodule to be malignant was 3.8 times increased by hypoechogenicity, 7.7 times increased by the presence of microcalcification, and 11.5 times increased by the absence of halo. On Doppler patterns, the presence of central vascularity increased the malignancy risk of a nodule by 5.8 times. According to the receiver operating characteristic analysis, patterns 3 and 4 were malignant, and patterns 1 and 2 were benign. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy of elastography were 100%, 80.2%, 61.7%, 100%, and 85%, respectively. Conclusion: Strain elastography can be used as a noninvasive method in distinguishing benign from malignant thyroid nodules and in identifying the patients who would undergo surgery.