Comparison of CT Texture Analysis Software Platforms in Renal Cell Carcinoma: Reproducibility of Numerical Values and Association With Histologic Subtype Across Platforms
AJR Am J Roentgenol . 2021 Apr 14;1-9. doi: 10.2214/AJR.20.22823. Online ahead of print.
Leo D Dreyfuss, E Jason Abel, Jered Nystrom, Nicholas J Stabo, Perry J Pickhardt, Meghan G Lubner
OBJECTIVE. The purpose of this article is to evaluate interobserver, intraobserver, and interplatform variability and compare the previously established association between texture metrics and tumor histologic subtype using three commercially available CT texture analysis (CTTA) software platforms on the same dataset of large (> 7 cm) renal cell carcinomas (RCCs).
MATERIALS AND METHODS. CT-based texture analysis was performed on contrast-enhanced MDCT images of large (> 7 cm) untreated RCCs in 124 patients (median age, 62 years; 82 men and 42 women) using three different software platforms. Using this previously studied cohort, texture features were compared across platforms. Features were correlated with histologic subtype, and strength of association was compared between platforms. Single-slice and volumetric measures from one platform were compared. Values for interobserver and intraobserver variability on a tumor subset (n = 30) were assessed across platforms.
RESULTS. Metrics including mean gray-level intensity, SD, and volume correlated fairly well across platforms (concordance correlation coefficient [CCC], 0.66-0.99; mean relative difference [MRD], 0.17-5.97%). Entropy showed high variability (CCC, 0.04; MRD, 44.5%). Mean, SD, mean of positive pixels (MPP), and entropy were associated with clear cell histologic subtype on almost all platforms (p < .05). Mean, SD, entropy, and MPP were highly reproducible on most platforms on both interobserver and intraobserver analysis.
CONCLUSION. Select texture metrics were reproducible across platforms and readers, but other metrics were widely variable. If clinical models are developed that use CTTA for medical decision making, these differences in reproducibility of some features across platforms need to be considered, and standardization is critical for more widespread adaptation and implementation.
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