Purpose: To evaluate volume doubling time (VDT) and mass doubling time (MDT) of persistent pulmonary subsolid nodules (SSNs) followed-up with low-dose (LD) computed tomography (CT) in patients without a history of malignancy.
Materials and methods: This retrospective institutional review board-approved study, with waiver of patient informed consent, included 97 SSNs in 97 patients (45 men, 52 women; median age, 58 years; range, 37-87 years) in whom at least two LD CT scans were obtained, with 3-month or longer follow-up interval and median follow-up of 633 days. SSNs were categorized into pure ground-glass nodules (GGNs) (group A), part-solid GGNs with solid components of 5 mm or smaller (group B), and part-solid GGNs with solid components larger than 5 mm (group C). Three-dimensional manual segmentation for all SSNs was performed on initial and latest follow-up LD CT scans; subsequently, VDTs and MDTs were calculated and were compared among groups by using Kruskal-Wallis test, followed by the Dunn procedure with Bonferroni correction for volume-growing SSNs and mass-growing SSNs.
Results: Volume growth was thus: 12 of 63 SSNs (19%), group A; nine of 23 SSNs (39%), group B; and eight of 11 SSNs (73%), group C. Median VDT was thus: 1832.3 days (range, 1230.7-4537.3 days), group A; 1228.5 days (range, 934.7-4617.7 days), group B; and 759.0 days (range, 376.4-941.5 days), group C. Mass growth was thus: 17 of 63 SSNs (27%), group A; 11 of 23 SSNs (48%), group B; and nine of 11 SSNs (82%), group C. Median MDT was 1556.1 days (range, 642.5-3564.5 days) for group A, 1199.9 days (range, 838.6-2578.7 days) for group B, and 627.7 days (range, 340.0-921.2 days) for group C. Median VDTs and MDTs of groups A and B were significantly longer than those of group C (P < .01).
Conclusion: Pure GGNs and part-solid GGNs with solid components of 5 mm or smaller show significantly longer VDTs and MDTs than do part-solid GGNs with solid components larger than 5 mm. Online supplemental material is available for this article.
© RSNA, 2014.