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Comparison of physical examination, ultrasound techniques and magnetic resonance imaging for the diagnosis of deep infiltrating endometriosis: A systematic review and metaanalysis of diagnostic accuracy studies

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Visual inspection via laparoscopy is considered the gold standard for the diagnosis of deep infiltrating endometriosis. Laparoscopy is an invasive procedure; therefore, it would be beneficial to patients if accurate noninvasive modalities were available for the diagnosis of deep infiltrating endometriosis. The purpose of the current review and metaanalysis was to assess the diagnostic accuracy of clinical examination, transvaginal ultrasound (TVUS), transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) and MRI as alternative methods for diagnosis of deep infiltrating endometriosis. A systematic search of the Medline, Scopus, Embase and Cochrane library databases, between their inception and September 2019, was performed. The quality of trials was assessed using the quality assessment of diagnostic accuracy studies2 tool. Metaanalyses were conducted to obtain the pooled sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative likelihood ratios and diagnostic odds ratio for each of the three imaging modalities and clinical examination. A total of 30 studies with 4,565 participants were included in the review. Physical examination had a pooled sensitivity of 71% and a specificity of 69%, with an average diagnostic accuracy [area under the curve (AUC) =0.76]. TVUS had a pooled sensitivity of 76% and a specificity of 94%, with higher diagnostic accuracy than physical examination (AUC =0.92). TRUS had a pooled sensitivity of 91% and a specificity of 80% with an AUC of 0.93. MRI had a pooled sensitivity of 82% and a specificity of 87% with higher diagnostic accuracy than physical examination (AUC =0.91). All the imaging modalities had good clinical utility, as indicated by the Fagan plot. The present analysis demonstrates that the imaging modalities TVUS, TRUS and MRI may be highly useful alternatives to laparoscopy for diagnosis of deep infiltrating endometriosis and that these techniques have a high sensitivity and specificity.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Ultrasound, Hanchuan People's Hospital, Hanchuan, Hubei 431600, P.R. China

Publication date: October 1, 2020

More about this publication?
  • Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine aims to ensure the expedient publication, in both print and electronic format, of studies relating to biology, gene therapy, infectious disease, microbiology, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. The journal welcomes studies pertaining to all aspects of molecular medicine, and studies relating to in vitro or in vivo experimental model systems relevant to the mechanisms of disease are also included.

    All materials submitted to this journal undergo the appropriate review via referees who are experts in this field. All materials submitted follow international guidelines with regard to approval of experiments on humans and animals.
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