The diagnostic performance of conventional ultrasound and strain elastography in malignant soft tissue tumors



To investigate the diagnostic value of conventional ultrasound (US) and strain elastography (SE) in malignant soft tissue tumors.


A total of 83 soft tissue masses were included prospectively. US and SE imaging were performed at the same time. Two observers assessed the B mode, color Doppler, elastic scores (ES), strain ratio (SR), and SE size to B mode size (EI/B) ratio and compared the consistency of the data between the observers. According to the pathological diagnosis of resection, the cases were divided into malignant and nonmalignant groups. The diagnostic value of conventional US and SE in the prediction of malignant soft tissue tumors was assessed.


The pathology results divided cases into 36 malignant lesions and 47 nonmalignant lesions. There was no statistically significant difference in gender, location, maximum diameter, echo, tail sign, cystic component, Doppler scores, or SR between the two groups (p > 0.05). However, significant differences between the two groups were found in age, depth, heterogeneity, edge, ES, and EI/B (p < 0.05). The biggest area under the receiver operating characteristics curve (0.934) was the combination model of age, heterogeneity, edge, ES, and EI/B, and the sensitivity and specificity were 0.861 and 0.957, respectively.


Conventional US and SE are significant for the diagnosis of malignant soft tissue tumors, and SE can be used as a complementary technique to the characterization of STTs using conventional US.

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Correspondence to Shaowu Wang.

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Dou, Y., Xuan, J., Zhao, T. et al. The diagnostic performance of conventional ultrasound and strain elastography in malignant soft tissue tumors. Skeletal Radiol (2021).

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  • Ultrasound (US)
  • Strain elastography (SE)
  • Soft tissue tumors
  • Malignant