The Alberta Stroke Program Early Computed Tomography Score (ASPECTS) is widely used to quantify early ischemic changes in the anterior circulation but has limited inter-rater reliability.We investigated whether application of 3-dimensional boundaries outlining the ASPECTS regions improves inter-rater reliability and accuracy.We included all patients from our DEFUSE 2 database who had a pretreatment noncontrast computed tomography scan (NCCT) of acceptable quality. Six raters (2 neuroradiologists, 2 vascular neurologists, and 2 neurology residents) scored ASPECTS of each NCCT without ("CT-native") and with the superimposed boundary template ("CT-template"). Gold-standard ASPECTS were generated by the 2 neuroradiologists through joint adjudication. Inter-rater reliability and accuracy were assessed using the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) for full-scale agreements and Gwet's AC1 for dichotomized (ASPECTS 0-6 vs 7-10) agreements.Eighty-two patients were included. Inter-rater reliability improved with higher training level for both CT-native (ICC?=?.15, .31, .54 for residents, neurologists, and radiologists, respectively) and CT-template (ICC?=?.18, .33, .56). Use of the boundary template improved correlation with the gold-standard for one resident on full-scale agreement (ICC increased from .01 to .31, P?=?.01) and another resident on dichotomized agreement (AC1 increased from .36 to .64, P?=?.01), but resulted in no difference for other raters. The template did not improve ICC between raters of the same training level.Inter-rater reliability of ASPECTS improves with physician training level. Standardized display of ASPECTS region boundaries on NCCT does not improve inter-rater reliability but may improve accuracy for some less experienced raters.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2020.104820
View details for PubMedID 32307316