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Background: CS constitutes a rare but potentially underdiagnosed and fatal disease. Its diagnosis remains difficult owing to the infrequent and indistinguishable symptoms and the lack of formal diagnostic criteria dependent upon the diagnostic techniques used. Early diagnosis and treatment, however, may help to counter its poor prognosis.We aim to characterize and compare the diagnostic accuracy of cardiac MRI, FDG-PET and myocardial biopsy for the diagnosis of cardiac sarcoidosis and to advance and compare methods for complex diagnostic test accuracy reviews and meta-analysis. Methods: Following a systematic review on DTA studies on the aforementioned topic, a four-part approach to meta-analysis will be used: (1) direct comparison of index tests with clinical reference standard, (2) indirect comparison of index tests with clinical reference standard, (3) addition of an alternative test to that indirect comparison (4) and Bayesian meta-analysis using results of part 3 as informative prior for comparisons analogous to part 1 and 2. Discussion: The most widely recognized diagnostic algorithm for cardiac sarcoidosis is considered out of date, as it precedes the introduction of imaging techniques in diagnostic pathways. These novel imaging techniques, like CMR and FDG-PET scan, have emerged as promising diagnostic tools which may fill the current diagnostic gap. Thus, a systematic review and evaluation of CS diagnosis are much needed. Such an attempt is anticipated to alter the current diagnostic guidelines for CS by shedding more light on the role of sophisticated imaging techniques on prompt CS therapy and follow-up. Trial registration: PROSPERO, CRD42019047126.

Original publication




Journal article


Diagn progn res

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Bayesian meta-analysis, Diagnostic test accuracy, Indirect comparison, Sarcoidosis, Cardiac, Systematic review (diagnostic)