Placental recess accompanied by a T2 dark band: a new finding for diagnosing placental invasion

Tomomi Sato, Naoko Mori, Osamu Hasegawa, Takeshi Shigihara, Keiya Fujimori, Kazuhiro Tasaki, Fumio Shishido

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Our aim was to assess the usefulness of a new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) finding, the placental recess, for diagnosing placental invasion. Methods: This retrospective study included 51 patients (mean age 34.1 years, range 26–43 years) with suspected placental invasion who underwent cesarean section. Preoperative MRI was performed using a 1.5-T unit and included axial, sagittal, and coronal T2-weighted imaging (T2WI) with half-Fourier fast spin-echo sequences. Overall, 9 patients showed placental invasion, and 42 did not. Placental recess was defined as a placental deformity with contraction of the placental surface and outer rim of the uterus accompanied by a T2 dark band. Two radiologists independently assessed the presence of the placental recess and conventional findings including uterine bulging, abnormal placental vascularity, placental heterogeneous intensity on T2-weighted imaging (T2WI), and the T2 dark band. Fisher’s two-sided exact test was used to compare findings between patients with and without placental invasion. Interobserver reliability was assessed using the kappa statistic. Results: MRI features had interobserver reliability of >0.40. Placental recess yielded the highest kappa value (0.898). Significant differences were identified between patients with and without placental invasion regarding abnormal placental vascularity, placental heterogeneous intensity, a T2 dark band, and the placental recess on T2WI (p = 0.0282, 0.0003, 0.0003, <0.0001, respectively). The placental recess had sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and accuracy of 56, 100, 100, 91, and 92%, respectively. Conclusion: The placental recess was useful for diagnosing placental invasion, with high interobserver variability and accuracy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2146-2153
Number of pages8
JournalAbdominal Radiology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Aug 1


  • Placenta accreta
  • Placenta increta
  • Placenta percreta
  • Placental invasion
  • Placental recess
  • T2 dark band

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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