Magnetic resonance imaging of bladder pheochromocytomas: a review
Yanni Zulia, DheerajReddy Gopireddy, Mayur K Virarkar, Ajaykumar C Morani, Padma Adimula, Sindhu Kumar, Priya Bhosale, Chandana Lall
Abdom Radiol (NY) . 2022 Dec;47(12):4032-4041. doi: 10.1007/s00261-022-03483-8. Epub 2022 Mar 28.
Bladder pheochromocytomas (PCCs) are rare tumors that account for 0.06% of all bladder tumors and makeup 1% of all PCCs. Most PCCs are functional, and they secrete catecholamines that lead to clinical symptoms such as paroxysmal hypertension, headaches, palpitations, and sweating. However, some are nonfunctional and asymptomatic and are hence difficult to diagnose. Cystoscopy and biopsy should not be performed when bladder PCCs are suspected. They may provoke a hypertensive crisis if preventative antiadrenergic blockers are not administered prior to the procedure. The diagnostic workup begins with obtaining blood or urine catecholamine and catecholamine metabolite values to make a presumptive diagnosis of bladder PCC. Computed tomography (C.T.) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are then used to localize and stage the tumor for surgical resection. MRI, due to its superior soft tissue resolution and the ability to use multiparametric MRI (mpMRI) to differentiate between layers of the bladder wall and from other bladder masses, is the optimal imaging modality to detect extra-adrenal bladder PCCs and determine locoregional staging. Once antiadrenergic medications are given, the tumor is resected, and the diagnosis is confirmed histologically. However, the differential diagnosis of bladder PCC often gets overlooked, leading to surgical resection in the absence of antiadrenergic medications, increasing the chances of a fatal hypertensive crisis. This makes MRI an essential diagnostic tool for staging bladder PCCs before surgery. This review discusses the indications for MRI in bladder PCCs and describes findings from these tumors on various MRI sequences and when to use them. We also discuss how MRI can differentiate bladder PCCs from other bladder neoplasms.