Vascularity in thyroid neoplasms: a methodological investigation with a view to diagnostics
Abstract:Larsen KK, Andersen NF, Melsen F, Sørensen FB. Vascularity in thyroid neoplasms: a methodological investigation with a view to diagnostics. APMIS 2006;114:749–56.
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the reliability of four different methods (vascular grading, Chalkley count, microvessel density (MVD) and stereological estimation) for quantifying intratumoral microvascularity in thyroid neoplasms, by comparing the variability within and between observers. In addition, the diagnostic and prognostic potential of neovascularity expressed by the four methods was evaluated. The study had a retrospective design and involved 24 follicular adenomas (FA), 19 follicular carcinomas (FC), and 17 papillary carcinomas (PC). Chalkley count was reproducible both within and between observers. MVD was not reproducible. Within observer the reproducibility of vascular grading was substantial, between observers it was fair to moderate. Stereological estimation was a priori considered reproducible. Keeping time consumption, cost and reproducibility in mind, Chalkley count should be the preferred method for assessing microvascularity in thyroid neoplasms. The diagnostic evaluation revealed a tendency towards higher degree of vascularity in FA compared to both FC and PC for all methods. No statistically significant association was seen between vascular density and prognosis.