Background: The study was performed to compare the diagnostic roles of computed tomography (CT) and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) in colorectal liver metastasis (CRLM).
Methods: 255 patients with colorectal cancer (CRC) were enrolled. These patients were confirmed as CRLM by histopathological assay. CT scans of the liver were performed with a 64-slice CT system. Serum CEA levels were determined using a human circulating cancer biomarker magnetic bead panel. True positive (TP), false positive (FP), true negative (TN) and false negative (FN) were calculated for CT and CEA with histopathological assay as golden standard.
Results: 142 CRLM patients and 113 non-CRLM patients were confirmed in the study. There were no obvious differences in age, sex and Dukes stage between CRLM and non-CRLM patients (P＞0.05). Diagnostic roles of CT and CEA on per-patient and per-lesion were analyzed. Detection sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) of CT on per-patient basis were 74.7%, 56.4%, 52.1%, and 77.9%, respectively. Sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of CEA were 64.4%, 51.4%, 49.3%, and 67.3%. In the analysis on per-lesion basis, detection sensitivity, specificity, PPV, and NPV of CT were increased to 87.8%, 88.8%, 91.5%, and 84.1%, respectively. Detection sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of CEA on per-lesion basis were 82.6%, 64.4%, 63.4%, and 83.2%.
Conclusion: CT exhibited better performances than CEA in diagnosis of CRLM on both of per-patient and per-lesion basis.