Performance of T2 mapping in the staging of Graves' ophthalmopathy based on different region of interest selection methods

Acta Radiol. 2024 May 20:2841851241248640. doi: 10.1177/02841851241248640. Online ahead of print.


Background: Discriminating the stage of Graves' ophthalmopathy (GO) is crucial for clinical decision. Application of conventional T2-weighted imaging in the staging is still limited.

Purpose: To evaluate the performance of T2 mapping based on two different regions of interest (ROIs) for staging GO.

Material and methods: In total, 56 GO patients were retrospectively enrolled and divided into two groups according to the clinical activity score (CAS). T2 relaxation time (T2RT) of extraocular muscle (EOM) on T2 mapping based on two different ROIs (T2RTROI-1: ROIs were drawn separately in the four EOMs; T2RTROI-2: ROI was drawn in the most inflamed EOM) was measured and compared between active and inactive groups.

Results: Both T2RTROI-1 and T2RTROI-2 values in the active GO were significantly higher than those of inactive GO (P <0.001). T2RTROI-1 and T2RTROI-2 values were positively correlated with CAS (rs=0.73, 0.69; P <0.001). When the T2RTROI-1 value of 83.3 ms and T2RTROI-2 value of 106.3 ms were used as cutoff values for staging GO, respectively, the best results were obtained with areas under the curve (AUCs) of 0.822 and 0.827. There was no significant difference for AUCs between T2RTROI-1 and T2RTROI-2 (P = 0.751). Excellent and good inter-observer agreements were achieved in quantitative measurements for T2RTROI-1 and T2RTROI-2 values, respectively, with intraclass correlation coefficients of 0.954 and 0.882.

Conclusion: The T2RT values derived from two different ROIs were useful for assessment of disease activity. Taking reproducibility and diagnostic performance into consideration, T2RTROI-1 would be an ideal image biomarker for staging GO compared to T2RTROI-2.

Keywords: Graves’ ophthalmopathy; T2 mapping; region of interest; staging.