CT and MRI features of gallbladder carcinoma
What is gallbladder carcinoma, and what are its CT and MR imaging features?
Gallbladder carcinoma, most often due to adenocarcinoma, is the most common primary malignancy of the biliary system, is more common in women than in men, and usually occurs in patients who are >50 years of age. It is associated with a poor clinical prognosis because it often presents in an advanced stage of disease.
On CT or MRI, it typically presents as a heterogeneously enhancing mass centered in the gallbladder fossa with or without invasion of surrounding organs. Additional imaging appearances may include focal or diffuse gallbladder wall thickening (often poorly defined) with enhancement, or a polypoid enhancing intraluminal gallbladder mass lesion. Presence of direct extension into surrounding organs, regional lymphadenopathy, or distant metastatic disease helps to differentiate gallbladder cancer, particularly when perforated, from acute cholecystitis