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J Korean Soc Radiol. 2016 Jun;74(6):365-372. English. Original Article.
Ha SM , Cho SW .
Department of Radiology, Kangwon National University Hospital, Chuncheon, Korea.

PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic utility of the virtual touch tissue quantification (VTQ) technology for differentiating between benign and malignant thyroid nodules. MATERIALS AND METHODS: 198 nodules (168 benign and 30 malignant nodules) identified in 164 patients with available VTQ velocity data and fine-needle aspiration cytology or post-surgical pathological results were included. The VTQ velocities of nodules and adjacent thyroid tissue were examined. RESULTS: Malignant nodules had a significantly higher VTQ velocity (3.06 ± 1.04 m/s, range: 1.90-6.46 m/s) than that of benign nodules (2.40 ± 0.85 m/s, range: 0.69-8.09 m/s) (p = 0.002). The VTQ velocity ratio between malignant nodules and adjacent thyroid tissue (1.39 ± 0.43, range: 0.89-2.65) was also statistically higher than that of benign nodules (1.15 ± 0.44, range: 0.26-3.47) (p = 0.008). The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for the VTQ velocity was 0.72 with a cutoff point of 2.37 m/s and that of the VTQ velocity ratio was 0.68 with a cutoff point of 1.26. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy for the VTQ velocity were 86.7%, 50.6%, 23.9%, 95.5%, and 56.1%, respectively and 60.0%, 72.0%, 27.7%, 91.0%, and 70.2%, respectively for the VTQ velocity ratio. CONCLUSION: VTQ may be helpful in differentiating malignant and benign thyroid nodules with high negative predictive value.

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