Purpose: To improve the diagnoses of the salivary gland tumors, a dynamic-enhanced MRI (dMRI) was investigated. Methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review of 93 cases of salivary gland tumors. The histological diagnoses were obtained from all patients using a surgical specimen and/or an open biopsy specimen. The dMRI as well as fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) and intraoperative frozen section (IFS) were analyzed. This study focused on the time-intensity curve (TIC) after injection, peak time (Tpeak), washout ratio (WR) as well as the gradient of enhancement and washout profile. Results: The histological diagnoses included pleomorphic adenoma (PMA) in 53 cases, the Warthin tumors (WT) in 14 cases and malignant tumors (MT) in 26 cases. Incorrect diagnosis rate of FNAC and IFS were 5.2 and 8.3%, respectively. The TIC revealed differences among the three types of tumors. Tpeak as well as WR also revealed significant differences (p < 0.001). Tpeak were lower in order of WT, MT, PMA, respectively. WR of TICs at 30, 45 and 105 s after Tpeak were higher in order of WT, MT, PMA, respectively (p < 0.001). The gradient of increment and washout in the TIC curve was also an important parameter to distinguish the three types of tumors. In MT, the rapid enhancement pattern was found in high or intermediate histological grade tumors, whereas the slow enhancement pattern was exhibited in low grade tumors. Conclusions: Our findings indicate that using Tpeak and WR, it is possible to distinguish between WT, PMA and MT. Additionally, a rapid enhancement pattern may be a potential marker for these tumors.
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