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Volume 14, Number 3, 2009

Whole body MR in patients with multiple myeloma

Alina Piekarek, Piotr Sosnowski, Adam Nowicki, Mieczysław Komarnicki


Background: Multiple myeloma is a cancer of plasma cells which leads to bone marrow
Aim: Whole-body MR is the most sensitive imaging method available to detect multiple myeloma lesions.
Material and methods: MR scans were performed in 100 patients with multiple myeloma who
were receiving treatment in the Haematology Clinic in Poznań in the years 2005–2006. Whole-body MR scans were performed with general coil 1.0 T in STIR sequences and T1 sequences, in coronal and sagittal planes with scanning area covering the head, neck, trunk and the limbs (FOV for specific regions was 36–48 cm). The bone lesions were classified as focal (monofocal/multifocal lesions), infiltrative, mixed and “salt and pepper” type. Depending on the size of the lesions the patients were included in one of three groups according to Salmon-Durie Plus classification.
Results: Four main types of multiple myeloma were distinguished based on MR scans: focal (48 patients; monofocal in 10 patients), infiltrative (17 patients), mixed type (19 patients) and “salt and pepper” type (4 patients). The remaining 12 patients had no multiple myeloma lesions in the bone marrow.
Additionally, in 18% of patients a soft tissue mass could be observed. According to Salmon-Durie Plus categorisation 27 subjects were classified as having stage I, 16 patients stage and 57 patients stage III disease. In 12% of patients MR data changed the disease staging.
Conclusions: WB MR is a sensitive and effective diagnostic method with an important impact on staging and further treatment of multiple myeloma.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2009; 14(3) : 80-84


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