Histology profiling of lung tumors: tru-cut versus full-core system for CT-guided biopsies

Radiol Med. 2024 Apr;129(4):566-574. doi: 10.1007/s11547-024-01772-4. Epub 2024 Mar 21.


Purpose: We aimed to compare the diagnostic yield and procedure-related complications of two different types of systems for percutaneous CT-guided lung biopsy.

Material and methods: All patients with a lung lesion who underwent a CT-guided lung biopsy at our institution, between January 2019 and 2021, were retrospectively analyzed. The inclusion criteria were: (a) Procedures performed using either a fully automated tru-cut or a semi-automated full-core biopsy needle, (b) CT images demonstrating the position of the needles within the lesion, (c) histopathological result of the biopsy and (d) clinical follow-up for at least 12 months and\or surgical histopathological results. A total of 400 biopsy fulfilling the inclusion criteria were selected and enrolled in the study.

Results: Overall technical success was 100% and diagnostic accuracy was 84%. Tru-cut needles showed a significantly higher diagnostic accuracy when compared to full-core needles (91% vs. 77%, p = 0.0004) and a lower rate of pneumothorax (31% vs. 41%, p = 0.047). Due to the statistically significant different of nodules size between the two groups, we reiterated the statistical analysis splitting our population around the 20 mm cut-off for nodule size. We still observed a significant difference in diagnostic accuracy between tru-cut and full-core needles favoring the former for both smaller and larger lesions (81% vs. 71%, p = 0.025; and 92% vs. 81%; p = 0.01, respectively).

Conclusion: Our results demonstrated that the use of automated tru-cut needles is associated with higher histopathological diagnostic accuracy compared to semi-automated full-core needles for CTLB.

Keywords: CT-guided; Full-core biopsy; Image-guided biopsy; Lung neoplasms; Lung nodules; Tru-cut biopsy.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Image-Guided Biopsy
  • Lung / diagnostic imaging
  • Lung / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed