Predictive value of one-dimensional mean computed tomography value of ground-glass opacity on high-resolution images for the possibility of future change

J Thorac Oncol. 2014 Apr;9(4):469-72. doi: 10.1097/JTO.0000000000000117.


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationship between clinical and radiological findings and the progression of ground-glass opacity (GGO) and to identify risk factors that predict the outcome of pure GGO lesions.

Methods: A retrospective study was conducted on 63 nodules of pure GGO. Clinical characteristics, the largest diameter, shape, and marginal characteristics, and one-dimensional mean computed tomography (m-CT) value of the GGO lesions were evaluated. During follow-up, 12 GGO lesions increased in size, and 17 appeared as solid portion. These 29 lesions were classified as growth group, and the remaining 34 lesions as stable group.

Results: The m-CT values were -634.9 ± 15.3 and -712.1 ± 14.1 HU for the growth and stable groups, respectively. The growth group was strongly associated with high m-CT values (p = 0.0007) and a history of lung cancer (p = 0.0389), whereas association with smoking habits and the shape of the GGO nodules was marginal. The m-CT values and a history of lung cancer were independent predictors for future changes in GGO lesions (p = 0.0023 and p = 0.0129, respectively). Sixteen of 18 lesions (88.9%) in patients without a history of lung cancer and with low m-CT values showed no nodule changes.

Conclusions: The m-CT value of GGO lesions is a risk factor associated with their future change. The interval of follow-up CT scanning or treatment policy should be determined considering the m-CT value.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / diagnostic imaging*
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods*