The computed tomographic (CT) scans of 30 patients with solitary bronchioloalveolar carcinoma were reviewed. Common features at CT included the peripheral or subpleural location of a pulmonary mass (25 cases), pseudocavitation (18 cases), heterogeneous attenuation (17 cases), irregular margins forming a star pattern (22 cases), and pleural tags (21 cases). Using these CT criteria, four independent observers attempted to identify cases of bronchioloalveolar carcinoma from a larger sample of lung cancers and benign lesions by categorizing a series of test cases into four probability categories. Although the bronchioloalveolar carcinomas were correctly ranked in the two highest probability categories 75% of the time (in 45 of 60 cases), there was considerable overlap with other lung lesions, particularly with adenocarcinoma and large cell undifferentiated carcinoma. However, even though the typical features of bronchioloalveolar carcinoma are not invariable or highly specific, they are characteristic enough to suggest the diagnosis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging