Medical Thoracoscopy, Computed Tomography-guided Biopsy, and Ultrasound-guided Biopsy for Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma: A Systematic Review

Anticancer Research 2021 May [Link]

Akihiro Shiroshita, Motohiro Kurosaki, Masafumi Takeshita, Yuki Kataoka


Background/aim: Although surgical thoracoscopy is recommended in the diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), the invasiveness of this procedure is of strong concern. Our review aimed to evaluate the accuracies of medical thoracoscopy (MT), computed tomography (CT)-guided biopsy, and ultrasound (US)-guided biopsy in the diagnosis of MPM among patients with pleural effusion.

Materials and methods: We searched the MEDLINE, Embase, Central, and International Clinical Trials Registry Platform databases for studies evaluating the diagnostic accuracy of at least one of the biopsy procedures among patients with pleural effusion of unknown aetiology who had undergone thoracentesis and/or blind biopsy. A hierarchical summary receiver operating curve was created for MT.

Results: Following full-text screening, 15 studies were included. MT studies had a high risk of bias and low applicability concern; however, hierarchical summary receiver operating curve revealed that MT had a high sensitivity.

Conclusion: MT might be a useful rule-in test for guiding the use of more invasive diagnostic procedures.