A new approach to predict lymph node metastasis in solid lung adenocarcinoma: a radiomics nomogram

Xinguan Yang, Xiaohuan Pan, Hui Liu, Dashan Gao, Jianxing He, Wenhua Liang, Yubao Guan


Background: Lymph node metastasis (LNM) of lung cancer is an important factor related to survival and recurrence. The association between radiomics features of lung cancer and LNM remains unclear. We developed and validated a radiomics nomogram to predict LNM in solid lung adenocarcinoma.
Methods: A total of 159 eligible patients with solid lung adenocarcinoma were divided into training (n=106) and validation cohorts (n=53). Radiomics features were extracted from venous-phase CT images. We built a radiomics nomogram using a multivariate logistic regression model combined with CT-reported lymph node (LN) status. The performance of the radiomics nomogram was evaluated using the area under curve (AUC) of receiver operating characteristic curve. We performed decision curve analysis (DCA) within training and validation cohorts to assess the clinical usefulness of the nomogram.
Results: Fourteen radiomics features were chosen from 94 candidate features to build a radiomics signature that significantly correlated with LNM. The model showed good calibration and discrimination in the training cohort, with an AUC of 0.871 (95% CI: 0.804–0.937), sensitivity of 85.71% and specificity of 77.19%. In the validation cohort, AUC was 0.856 (95% CI: 0.745–0.966), sensitivity was 91.66%, and specificity was 82.14%. DCA demonstrated that the nomogram was clinically useful. The nomogram also showed good predictive ability in patients at high risk for LNM in the CT-reported LN negative (cN0) subgroup.
Conclusions: The radiomics nomogram, based on preoperative CT images, can be used as a noninvasive method to predict LNM in patients with solid lung adenocarcinoma.