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Imaging features of adrenal masses

  • Authors: Albano, Domenico*; Agnello, Francesco; Midiri, Federico; Pecoraro, Giusy; Bruno, Alberto; Alongi, Pierpaolo; Toia, Patrizia; Di Buono, Giuseppe; Agrusa, Antonino; Sconfienza, Luca Maria; Pardo, Salvatore; La Grutta, Ludovico; Midiri, Massimo; Galia, Massimo
  • Publication year: 2019
  • Type: Review essay (rassegna critica) (Articolo in rivista)
  • OA Link:


The widespread use of imaging examinations has increased the detection of incidental adrenal lesions, which are mostly benign and non-functioning adenomas. The differentiation of a benign from a malignant adrenal mass can be crucial especially in oncology patients since it would greatly affect treatment and prognosis. In this setting, imaging plays a key role in the detection and characterization of adrenal lesions, with several imaging tools which can be employed by radiologists. A thorough knowledge of the imaging features of adrenal masses is essential to better characterize these lesions, avoiding a misinterpretation of imaging findings, which frequently overlap between benign and malignant conditions, thus helping clinicians and surgeons in the management of patients. The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the main imaging features of adrenal masses and tumor-like conditions recalling the strengths and weaknesses of imaging modalities commonly used in adrenal imaging.