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Ultrasonography in diagnosing clinically occult groin hernia: systematic review and meta-analysis

Kwee, R. M. & Kwee, T. C., Nov-2018, In : European Radiology. 28, 11, p. 4550-4560 11 p.

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  • Ultrasonography in diagnosing clinically occult groin hernia systematic review and meta-analysis

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Objectives To provide an updated systematic review on the performance of ultrasonography (US) in diagnosing clinically occult groin hernia.

Methods A systematic search was performed in MEDLINE and Embase. Methodological quality of included studies was assessed. Accuracy data of US in detecting clinically occult groin hernia were extracted. Positive predictive value (PPV) was pooled with a random effects model. For studies investigating the performance of US in hernia type classification (inguinal vs femoral), correctly classified proportion was assessed.

Results Sixteen studies were included. In the two studies without verification bias, sensitivities were 29.4% [95% confidence interval (CI), 15.1-47.5%] and 90.9% (95% CI, 70.8-98.9%); specificities were 90.0% (95% CI, 80.5-95.9%) and 90.6% (95% CI, 83.0-95.6%). Verification bias or a variation of it (i.e. study limited to only subjects with definitive proof of disease status) was present in all other studies. Sensitivity, specificity, and negative predictive value (NPV) were not pooled. PPV ranged from 58.8 to 100%. Pooled PPV, based on data from ten studies with low risk of bias and no applicability concerns with respect to patient selection, was 85.6% (95% CI, 76.5-92.7%). Proportion of correctly classified hernias, based on data from four studies, ranged between 94.4% and 99.1%.

Conclusions Sensitivity, specificity and NPV of US in detecting clinically occult groin hernia cannot reliably be determined based on current evidence. Further studies are necessary. Accuracy may strongly depend on the examiner's skills. PPV is high. Inguinal and femoral hernias can reliably be differentiated by US.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4550-4560
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean Radiology
Volume28
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2018

    Keywords

  • Ultrasound, Groin, Inguinal hernia, Occult, Diagnostic performance, ABDOMINAL-WALL HERNIAS, INGUINAL-HERNIAS, PREDICTIVE-VALUE, FEMORAL HERNIAS, ULTRASOUND, ACCURACY, SONOGRAPHY, BIAS, CT, CLASSIFICATION

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