Objectives: To systematically review current research applications of radiomics in patients with cholangiocarcinoma and to assess the quality of CT and MRI radiomics studies. Methods: A systematic search was conducted on PubMed/Medline, Web of Science, and Scopus databases to identify original studies assessing radiomics of cholangiocarcinoma on CT and/or MRI. Three readers with different experience levels independently assessed quality of the studies using the radiomics quality score (RQS). Subgroup analyses were performed according to journal type, year of publication, quartile and impact factor (from the Journal Citation Report database), type of cholangiocarcinoma, imaging modality, and number of patients. Results: A total of 38 original studies including 6242 patients (median 134 patients) were selected. The median RQS was 9 (corresponding to 25.0% of the total RQS; IQR 1-13) for reader 1, 8 (22.2%, IQR 3-12) for reader 2, and 10 (27.8%; IQR 5-14) for reader 3. The inter-reader agreement was good with an ICC of 0.75 (95% CI 0.62-0.85) for the total RQS. All studies were retrospective and none of them had phantom assessment, imaging at multiple time points, nor performed cost-effectiveness analysis. The RQS was significantly higher in studies published in journals with impact factor > 4 (median 11 vs. 4, p = 0.048 for reader 1) and including more than 100 patients (median 11.5 vs. 0.5, p < 0.001 for reader 1). Conclusions: Quality of radiomics studies on cholangiocarcinoma is insufficient based on the radiomics quality score. Future research should consider prospective studies with a standardized methodology, validation in multi-institutional external cohorts, and open science data.
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