Predictive value of computed tomography in identifying extranodal extension in human papillomavirus-positive versus human papillomavirus-negative head and neck cancer

Head and Neck Cancer

Yan F, et al. Head Neck 2020 - Review.


Pathologic extranodal extension (pENE) impacts treatment planning and is an important prognostic indicator for patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Computed tomography (CT) is a commonly used modality for assessment of radiographic ENE (rENE). To determine the predictive value of CT-identified rENE in predicting pENE, we performed a systematic review through a search of 4 databases (PubMed, Scopus, Cochrane, and OVID). Meta-analysis of diagnostic performance based on

human papillomavirus (HPV) status was conducted. For HPV-negative HNSCC, pooled sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy were 60.6%, 93.3%, and 82.6%, respectively. Overall positive predictive value (PPV) was 82.7%. For HPV-positive HNSCC, pooled sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy were 77.7%, 72.2%, and 63.8%, respectively. Overall PPV was 68.6%. Significant differences were observed in diagnostic performance parameters between the two cohorts. The radiographic characteristics of HPV-positive and HPV-negative nodal metastases in HNSCC differ and radiographic evaluation of ENE in HPV-positive nodes is challenging. Development of refined imaging characteristics of HPV-positive nodes is needed to improve diagnostic performance.