Distinguishing recurrent intra-axial metastatic tumor from radiation necrosis following gamma knife radiosurgery using dynamic susceptibility- weighted contrast-enhanced perfusion MR imaging

Ramon Barajas, J. S. Chang, P. K. Sneed, M. R. Segal, M. W. McDermott, S. Cha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

135 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: MR image-guided gamma knife radiosurgery is often used to treat intra-axial metastatic neoplasms. Following treatment, it is often difficult to determine whether a progressively enhancing lesion is due to metastatic tumor recurrence or radiation necrosis. The purpose of our study was to determine whether relative cerebral blood volume (rCBV), relative peak height (rPH), and percentage of signal-intensity recovery (PSR) derived from dynamic susceptibility- weighted contrast-enhanced perfusion MR imaging can distinguish recurrent metastatic tumor from radiation necrosis. Materials and Methods: Twenty-seven patients with systemic cancer underwent gamma knife radiosurgery for metastatic lesions of the brain and subsequently developed enlarging regions of enhancement within the radiation field. Subsequent surgical resection or clinicoradiologic follow-up established a diagnosis of recurrent metastatic tumor or radiation necrosis. Perfusion MR imaging datasets were retrospectively reprocessed, and regions of interest were drawn around the entire contrast-enhancing region. The resulting T2* signal-intensity time curves produced rCBV, rPH, and PSR values for each examination. A Welch t test was used to compare imaging values between groups. Results: The mean, minimum, and maximum PSR values were significantly lower (P .02) in the recurrent metastatic tumor group. Conclusions: The findings of our study suggest that perfusion MR imaging may be used to differentiate recurrent intra-axial metastatic tumor from gamma knife-induced radiation necrosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)367-372
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2009
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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