Carcinoma of the larynx and hypopharynx: computed tomographic-histopathologic correlations.
Twenty consecutive patients underwent computed tomography (CT) prior to total laryngectomy in order to assess the accuracy of CT scanning in the evaluation of carcinoma of the larynx and hypopharynx. CT scans were prospectively interpreted and the extent of tumor was recorded graphically at five major levels of the larynx. The extent of tumor was similarly evaluated on whole-mount histologic sections of the laryngeal specimens prepared in the horizontal plane similar to the CT scans. The results were compared to assess the ability of CT to identify tumor extent accurately. Despite good correlation of gross tumor extent between histologic specimens and CT scanning, specific pitfalls in CT diagnosis were identified. Overestimation of tumor extent was caused by edematous changes in six patients and tumor-associated inflammatory changes in three patients. In seven patients, mass effect from adjacent bulky tumor significantly distorted normal structures, mimicking tumor involvement. Small foci of mucosal tumor in three patients and microscopic cartilage involvement in two patients were not identified on CT scanning, causing underestimation of tumor extent.
Silverman, PM; Bossen, EH; Fisher, SR; Cole, TB; Korobkin, M; Halvorsen, RA
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