Authors: ABDUSSAMET BATUR, ABİDİN KILINÇER, FATİH ATEŞ, NAZLIM AKTUĞ DEMİR, RECAİ ERGÜN
Abstract: Background/aim: To investigate the changes in the spleen size, parenchymal heterogeneity, and computed tomography (CT) texture analysis features of patients diagnosed with Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Materials and methods: The size and parenchymal structure of the spleen in 91 patients who underwent thoracic CT examination due to COVID-19 were evaluated. For the evaluation of parenchymal heterogeneity, CT texture analysis was performed using dedicated software (Olea Medical, France). The texture analysis of each case consisted of 15 first-order intensity-based features, 17 gray level cooccurrence matrix-based features, and 9 gray level run length matrix-based features. Results: A total of 91 patients (45 males, 46 females) with a mean age of 54.31 ± 16.33 years (range: 18-81) were included in the study. A statistically significant decrease in spleen size was seen in the follow-up CT examinations (p < 0.001) whereas no statistically significant difference was found between the Hounsfield unit (HU) values. The radiomics consisted of first-order intensity-based features such as 90th percentile, maximum, interquartile range, range, mean absolute deviation, standard deviation, and variance, all of which showed statistically significant differences (p-values: < 0.001, < 0.001, 0.001, 0.003, 0.001, 0.001, and 0.004, respectively). "Correlation" as a gray level co-occurrence matrix-based feature and "gray level nonuniformity" as a gray level run length matrix-based feature showed statistically differences (p-values: 0.033 and < 0.001, respectively). Conclusions: Although COVID-19 manifests with lung involvement in the early stage, it can also cause systemic involvement, and the spleen may be one of its target organs. A decrease in the spleen size and parenchymal microstructure changes can be observed in the short follow-up time. It is hoped that the changes in the parenchymal microstructure will be demonstrated by a noninvasive method: texture analysis.
Keywords: COVID-19, spleen size, texture analysis
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