Global Variation in Magnetic Resonance Imaging Quality of the Prostate

the PRIME Quality Improvement Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: High variability in prostate MRI quality might reduce accuracy in prostate cancer detection. Purpose: To prospectively evaluate the quality of MRI scanners taking part in the quality control phase of the global PRIME (Prostate Imaging Using MRI ± Contrast Enhancement) trial using the Prostate Imaging Quality (PI-QUAL) standardized scoring system, give recommendations on how to improve the MRI protocols, and establish whether MRI quality could be improved by these recommendations. Materials and Methods: In the prospective clinical trial (PRIME), for each scanner, centers performing prostate MRI submitted five consecutive studies and the MRI protocols (phase I). Submitted data were evaluated in consensus by two expert genitourinary radiologists using the PI-QUAL scoring system that evaluates MRI diagnostic quality using five points (1 and 2 = nondiagnostic; 3 = sufficient; 4 = adequate, 5 = optimal) between September 2021 and August 2022. Feedback was provided for scanners not achieving a PI-QUAL 5 score, and centers were invited to resubmit new imaging data using the modified protocol (phase II). Descriptive comparison of outcomes was made between the MRI scanners, feedback provided, and overall PI-QUAL scores. Results: In phase I, 41 centers from 18 countries submitted a total of 355 multiparametric MRI studies from 71 scanners, with nine (13%) scanners achieving a PI-QUAL score of 3, 39 (55%) achieving a score of 4, and 23 (32%) achieving a score of 5. Of the 48 (n = 71 [68%]) scanners that received feedback to improve, the dynamic contrast-enhanced sequences were those that least adhered to the Prostate Imaging Reporting and Data System, version 2.1, criteria (44 of 48 [92%]), followed by diffusion-weighted imaging (20 of 48 [42%]) and T2-weighted imaging (19 of 48 [40%]). In phase II, 36 centers from 17 countries resubmitted revised studies, resulting in a total of 62 (n = 64 [97%]) scanners with a final PI-QUAL score of 5. Conclusion: Substantial variation in global prostate MRI acquisition parameters as a measure of quality was observed, particularly with DCE sequences. Basic evaluation and modifications to MRI protocols using PI-QUAL can lead to substantial improvements in quality.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere231130
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2023


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