Michael T Corwin, Sohrab C Kadivar, Claire E Graves, Elham Kamangar, Benjamin W Carney, Michael J Campbell
Abdom Radiol (NY) . 2023 Feb;48(2):680-687. doi: 10.1007/s00261-022-03741-9. Epub 2022 Nov 16.
Purpose: To describe the appearance of chronically hemorrhagic adenomas on adrenal protocol CT and correlate imaging with pathologic findings.
Methods: Retrospective case series of adult patients with resected adrenal adenomas showing internal hemorrhage at histology. Seven of nine patients underwent pre-operative adrenal protocol CT and 2/7 underwent unenhanced CT with portal venous phase CT. Two abdominal radiologists in consensus assessed the CT images for the presence of calcifications, macroscopic fat, cystic/necrotic appearance, and the presence, pattern, and percent nodule volume of areas < 10 HU on unenhanced CT. Absolute washout was calculated using a large ROI, and ROIs on the highest and lowest attenuating regions on the portal venous phase.
Results: Mean adenoma length was 4.9 cm. All adenomas had areas measuring < 10 HU on unenhanced CT, ranging from < 20 to > 80% nodule volume. Calcifications were present in 4/9 adenomas and gross fat in 4/9 on CT. Of the seven cases with adrenal protocol CT, the absolute washout was < 60% in 5/7 using the large ROI, 5/7 using the low attenuation ROI, and 7/7 using the high attenuation ROI. At histology, all nine cases had microscopic evidence of hemorrhage, lipid rich adenoma cells, and fibrosclerosis. Myelolipomatous changes were identified in 4/9 cases, with the remaining five cases showing lipomatous metaplasia without a myeloid component.
Conclusion: Chronically hemorrhagic adrenal adenomas demonstrated variable areas < 10 HU on unenhanced CT corresponding to lipid rich adenoma cells. Absolute washout was most often < 60%, hypothesized to be due to fibrosclerosis within the adenomas.