COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHIC FEATURES OF CANINE NONPARENCHYMAL HEMANGIOSARCOMA

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Abstract

The purpose of this retrospective study was to describe pre- and postcontrast computed tomographic (CT) characteristics of confirmed nonparenchymal hemangiosarcoma in a group of dogs. Medical records were searched during the period of July 2003 and October 2011 and dogs with histologically confirmed nonparenchymal hemangiosarcoma and pre- and postcontrast CT images were recruited. Two observers recorded a consensus opinion for the following CT characteristics for each dog: largest transverse tumor diameter, number of masses, general tumor shape, character of the tumor margin, precontrast appearance, presence of dystrophic calcification, presence of postcontrast enhancement, pattern of postcontrast enhancement, presence of regional lymphadenopathy, and presence of associated cavitary fluid. A total of 17 dogs met inclusion criteria. Tumors were located in the nasal cavity, muscle, mandible, mesentery, subcutaneous tissue, and retroperitoneal space. Computed tomographic features of nonparenchymal hemangiosarcoma were similar to those of other soft tissue sarcomas, with most tumors being heterogeneous in precontrast images, invasive into adjacent tissue, and heterogeneously contrast enhancing. One unexpected finding was the presence of intense foci of contrast enhancement in 13 of the 17 tumors (76%). This appearance, which is not typical of other soft tissue sarcomas, was consistent with contrast medium residing in vascular channels. Findings indicated that there were no unique distinguishing CT characteristics for nonparenchymal hemangiosarcoma in dogs; however, the presence of highly attenuating foci of contrast enhancement may warrant further investigation in prospective diagnostic sensitivity and treatment outcome studies.

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