Lipid-Metabolism-Related Factors Affect Unenhanced CT Attenuation of Adrenal Adenoma

CT attenuation also affected by BMI and blood cortisol levels.

Unenhanced CT attenuation in adrenal adenoma (AA) can be affected by lipid-metabolism-related factors, according to a study published in the journal European Radiology.

Researchers from Japan sought to determine if lipid metabolism-related factors regulated unenhanced CT attenuation in AA. A total of 36 with surgically proven AAs participated in the study. The underlying diseases in the group were:

  • Primary aldosteronism, 24 patients

  • Cushing’s syndrome, 8 patients

  • Subclinical Cushing’s syndrome, 3 patients

  • Non-functioning AA, 1 patient

The researchers measured unenhanced CT attenuation of the AAs and the liver. Pathologically, clear cell ratio (CCR) constituting each AA was qualitatively assessed. The researchers also obtained clinical data including tumor diameter, body mass index (BMI), hemoglobin A1c, triglyceride, total cholesterol, blood cortisol and plasma aldosterone levels were also obtained.

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The results showed that all patients demonstrated a significant correlation between CT attenuation and each of CCR, BMI and blood cortisol levels. The 24 patients with primary aldosteronism and 1 with non-functioning AA also showed a significant correlation between CT attenuation and CCR or BMI.

The researchers concluded that lipid-metabolism-related factors including BMI and blood cortisol levels can affect unenhanced CT attenuation of AA in addition to pathological factors.