OBJECTIVE. Preliminary reports have described the use of MR imaging for the detection of deep venous thrombosis. However, no prospective study comparing MR imaging with contrast venography (the gold standard) has been reported. Accordingly, we performed a prospective, blinded study of the efficacy of MR imaging in 61 consecutive patients with clinically suspected deep venous thrombosis. In cases of disagreement, additional testing was performed to determine the diagnosis. SUBJECTS AND METHODS. From June 1991 to February 1992, 61 patients with clinically suspected deep venous thrombosis were examined with venography and MR imaging. The average time between studies was 3 hr. In 21 of the 61 patients, the final diagnosis was deep venous thrombosis. RESULTS. For detection of deep venous thrombosis in the pelvis, the sensitivity of MR imaging was 100% (9/9) with a 95% confidence interval of 72-100% and the specificity was 95% (52/55) with a 95% confidence interval of 85-99%. In the thigh, the sensitivity (16/16) and specificity (43/43) were both 100% with 95% confidence intervals of 83-100% and 93-100%, respectively. In the calf, the sensitivity was 87% (13/15) with a 95% confidence interval of 60-98% and the specificity was 97% (36/37) with a 95% confidence interval of 86-100%. CONCLUSION. We found no statistically significant difference between MR imaging and contrast venography in the detection of deep venous thrombosis. This result suggests that MR imaging is at least as sensitive and specific as contrast venography in the detection of deep venous thrombosis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging