J Gynecol Oncol.  2011 Dec;22(4):275-287. 10.3802/jgo.2011.22.4.275.

Diffusion-weighted MR imaging in gynecologic cancers

  • 1Department of Radiology, Takagi Hospital, Okawa, Japan. s.motoshima@gmail.com
  • 2Department of Radiology, Saga University Faculty of Medicine, Saga, Japan.
  • 3Department of Radiology, Saga Social Insurance Hospital, Saga, Japan.
  • 4Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Kurume University School of Medicine, Kurume, Japan.


Diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) reflects changes in proton mobility caused by pathological alterations of tissue cellularity, cellular membrane integrity, extracellular space perfusion, and fluid viscosity. Functional imaging is becoming increasingly important in the evaluation of cancer patients because of the limitations of morphologic imaging. DWI is being applied to the detection and characterization of tumors and the evaluation of treatment response in patients with cancer. The advantages of DWI include its cost-effectiveness and brevity of execution, its complete noninvasiveness, its lack of ionizing radiation, and the fact that it does not require injection of contrast material, thus enabling its use in patients with renal dysfunction. In this article, we describe the clinical application of DWI to gynecological disorders and its diagnostic efficacy therein.


Diagnosis; Diffusion magnetic resonance imaging; Gynecology; Magnetic resonance imaging; Neoplasms
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