Detection of flat lesions in the colon with CT colonography

J. L. Fidler, C. D. Johnson, R. L. MacCarty, T. J. Welch, A. K. Hara, W. S. Harmsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


Background: We investigated whether flat lesions of the colon could be detected on computed tomographic colonography (CTC). Methods: CTC and conventional colonoscopy were performed on 547 consecutive patients. A subset of 22 polyps was described as flat on colonoscopy (n = 16) or CTC (n = 6) and are the basis of this report. CTC was performed with a standard technique (5-mm collimation, 3-mm reconstruction intervals). Patients were scanned in supine and prone positions. Examinations were randomly assigned and reviewed in a blinded fashion by two of three radiologists. Prospective interpretations were recorded. All patients had conventional colonoscopy, which served as the gold standard. Results: Twenty-two flat lesions ranging from 0.4 to 3.5 cm were histologically classified as adenomatous (n = 8) or hyperplastic (n = 14). The sensitivities for detecting all flat lesions and flat adenomas by each reviewer were 43% and 100%, 65% and 100%, and 15% and 13%, respectively. "Double reading" resulted in detection of 68% of all lesions and 100% of adenomas. Of the seven hyperplastic polyps missed by both reviewers, four were identified retrospectively. Conclusion: Flat lesions of the colon represent an important source of false negative CTC examinations. Awareness of their morphology can assist radiologists in finding most of these challenging lesions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)292-300
Number of pages9
JournalAbdominal Imaging
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002


  • Colon, abnormalities
  • Colon, computed tomography
  • Colon, neoplasms
  • Colonoscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Gastroenterology
  • Urology


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