MRE Does Not Fare Well at Detecting Lesions Evident on Upper Endoscopy

A recent study (PC Church et al. JPGN 2018; 67: 53-8) examined how well EGD findings were detected by MRE in 188 children (mean age 14 years).

Key findings:

  • EGD was macroscopically abnormal in 93 (49%) with ulcerations being the most common abnormality in 66 (35%).
  • In contrast, the local radiologist identified UGI inflammation in 7 (4%) and the central radiologists identied UGI inflammation in 20 (22%).  “There was no agreement between local and central radiologists when examining the UGI as a whole (κ=-0.02, P-0.59)”
  • The local radiologists “correctly identified only 5 of 93 (8%) patients with UGI findings on EGD.”  The central radiologists “correctly identified 9 of 45 (30%) patients with UGI findings on EGD.”

The authors state that “the Porto criteria mandate the performance of EGD for all pediatric patients suspected of having IBD. Our study has demonstrated that MRE cannot be relied upon as the sole method of evaluating the UGI.”

My take: For those who take care of children with IBD, this study will not come as a surprise as many of the UGI findings (found at endoscopy) are subtle.  This study does quantify the much higher sensitivity of endoscopic evaluation and is similar to studies that have compared capsule endoscopy to MRE.

Related blog posts:


Cumberland Island 2018