Prediction of lymph node metastases using pretreatment PET radiomics of the primary tumour in esophageal adenocarcinoma: an external validation study

C. Zhang, Z.W. Shi, P. Kalendralis, P. Whybra, C. Parkinson, M. Berbee, E. Spezi, A. Roberts, A. Christian, W. Lewis, T. Crosby, A. Dekker, L. Wee, K.G. Foley*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Objectives: To improve clinical lymph node staging (cN-stage) in oesophageal adenocarcinoma by developing and externally validating three prediction models; one with clinical variables only, one with positron emission tomography (PET) radiomics only, and a combined clinical and radiomics model.Methods: Consecutive patients with fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) avid tumours treated with neoadjuvant therapy between 2010 and 2016 in two international centres (n = 130 and n = 60, respectively) were included. Four clinical variables (age, gender, clinical T-stage and tumour regression grade) and PET radiomics from the primary tumour were used for model development. Diagnostic accuracy, area under curve (AUC), discrimination and calibration were calculated for each model. The prognostic significance was also assessed.Results: The incidence of lymph node metastases was 58% in both cohorts. The areas under the curve of the clinical, radiomics and combined models were 0.79, 0.69 and 0.82 in the developmental cohort, and 0.65, 0.63 and 0.69 in the external validation cohort, with good calibration demonstrated. The area under the curve of current cN-stage in development and validation cohorts was 0.60 and 0.66, respectively. For overall survival, the combined clinical and radiomics model achieved the best discrimination performance in the external validation cohort (X-2 = 6.08, df = 1, p = 0.01).Conclusion: Accurate diagnosis of lymph node metastases is crucial for prognosis and guiding treatment decisions. Despite finding improved predictive performance in the development cohort, the models using PET radiomics derived from the primary tumour were not fully replicated in an external validation cohort.Advances in knowledge: This international study attempted to externally validate a new prediction model for lymph node metastases using PET radiomics. A model combining clinical variables and PET radiomics improved discrimination of lymph node metastases, but these results were not externally replicated.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20201042
Number of pages10
JournalBritish Journal of Radiology
Issue number1118
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • cancer
  • life
  • neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy
  • nomogram
  • positron-emission-tomography
  • preoperative chemoradiotherapy
  • segmentation
  • squamous-cell carcinoma
  • texture analysis
  • LIFE

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