Desmoid tumor MRI

Jump to: navigation, search

Desmoid tumor Microchapters


Patient Information


Historical Perspective




Differentiating Desmoid tumor from other Diseases

Epidemiology and Demographics

Risk Factors

Natural History, Complications and Prognosis


History and Symptoms

Physical Examination

Laboratory Findings



Other Imaging Findings

Other Diagnostic Studies


Medical Therapy


Cost-Effectiveness of Therapy

Future or Investigational Therapies

Case Studies

Case #1

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Sara Mohsin, M.B.B.S.[2]Faizan Sheraz, M.D. [3]


MRI is preferred over CT, especially for truncal and extremity desmoid tumors. On MRI, desmoid tumor has variable characteristics depending on their cellularity and fibrous content with loss of signal following fat saturation. They appear isointense/hypointense on T1 and hyperintense on T2.


  • MRI is required in order to:
    • Define the relationship of the tumor to adjacent structures
    • Assess resectability
    • Find out the need for treatment
    • Monitor recurrence after surgery
  • MRI is preferred over CT, especially for truncal and extremity tumors
  • MRI may be helpful in the diagnosis of desmoid tumor. Findings on MRI diagnostic of desmoid tumor include:[1][2][3][4]
MRI characteristics of desmoid tumors
MRI sequence Characteristics
T1 C+ (Gd)
  • Typically enhances avidly
A 47-year-old woman with desmoid-type fibromatosis in the right axilla with progression (Group 1). This was misdiagnosed as a sarcoma on preoperative CT but as fibromatosis on preoperative MR. The tumor shows iso-signal intensity on coronal T1-weighted image (A) and high signal intensity on axial T2-weighted image (B). The margin is partially ill-defined (white arrows) on axial T2-weighted image (B). A rim of surrounding fat (white arrows) with high signal intensity is clearly seen on T1-weighted image (A). On enhanced T1-weighted axial (C) and coronal (D) images, the tumor shows strong and heterogeneous enhancement with a central area of nonenhancing low signal bands (black arrows). The maximal standardized uptake value on FDG PET was 2.1 (not shown). CT = computed tomography, MR = magnetic resonance, FDG PET = 18F-fluorodeoxy glucose positron emission tomography.Source: Xu H. et al, Department of Radiology and Research Institute of Radiology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea (HX, HJK, SL, JWL, HNL, MYK); Department of Radiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China (HX); Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery (DKK); and Pathology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea (JSS).
Extra-Abdominal Fibromatosis (Desmoid Tumor): A Rare Tumor of the Lower Extremity Arising from the Popliteal Fossa. Axial image of MRI shows a large, expansive heterogeneous soft tissue mass with contrast, closely applied to the muscular structures, and infiltration and obliteration of adjacent structures (white asteriks).Source: Ali Kaygain M. et al, Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Erzurum Regional Training and Research Hospital, 25020 Erzurum, Turkey


  1. Desmoid tumor. Radiopedia(2015) Accessed on January 20, 2015
  2. Azizi L, Balu M, Belkacem A, Lewin M, Tubiana JM, Arrivé L (2005). "MRI features of mesenteric desmoid tumors in familial adenomatous polyposis". AJR Am J Roentgenol. 184 (4): 1128–35. doi:10.2214/ajr.184.4.01841128. PMID 15788583.
  3. Vandevenne JE, De Schepper AM, De Beuckeleer L, Van Marck E, Aparisi F, Bloem JL; et al. (1997). "New concepts in understanding evolution of desmoid tumors: MR imaging of 30 lesions". Eur Radiol. 7 (7): 1013–9. doi:10.1007/s003300050243. PMID 9265665.
  4. Lee JC, Thomas JM, Phillips S, Fisher C, Moskovic E (2006). "Aggressive fibromatosis: MRI features with pathologic correlation". AJR Am J Roentgenol. 186 (1): 247–54. doi:10.2214/AJR.04.1674. PMID 16357411.