Screening breast ultrasound detects cancers missed on mammography in women with dense breasts

Screening breast ultrasound performed after mammography on women with greater than 50% breast density detects an additional 3.4 cancers or high risk lesions per one thousand woman screened, a detection rate just under that of screening mammography alone for women with less dense breasts, a new study shows. Screening mammography detects 4-5 cancers per thousand women screened.

The study, conducted in conjunction with seven Connecticut radiology practices, included 19,745 women who had and "normal" mammograms. Sixty-seven cancers were found, said Dr. Sarah Steenbergen, lead author of the study, who is now at Yale University in New Haven, CT. "Out of the available surgical reports, only one case had nodal involvement at the time of diagnosis. This suggests that the cancers are detected early and therefore we anticipate a ," Dr. Steenbergen said.

The study has been conducted over two years, "and we've seen an improvement in the sensitivity of screening breast ultrasound from 96.6% to 100% and in specificity from 94.0% to 96% from the first to the second year," she said. This illustrates a learning curve, and "we anticipate that as the number of screening breast ultrasounds increase, physicians will be even better able to differentiate benign from ," she said.

Recent legislation in Connecticut mandates reporting of on mammograms and recommending follow up screening ultrasound for women with greater than 50% breast density, said Dr. Steenbergen. The study was conducted, in part, to measure the outcome of this legislation and what we can hope to achieve with screening , she said.

Dr. Steenbergen will present her study at the ARRS annual meeting on April 18 in Washington, DC.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Cancer: Tumors absorb sugar for mobility

4 hours ago

Cancer cells are gluttons. We have long known that they monopolize large amounts of sugar. More recently, it became clear that some tumor cells are also characterized by a series of features such as mobility or unlikeliness ...

Early hormone therapy may be safe for women's hearts

13 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Healthy women at low risk of cardiovascular disease may be able to take hormone replacement therapy soon after menopause for a short time without harming their hearts, according to a new study.

Low yield for repeat colonoscopy in some patients

14 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Repeat colonoscopies within 10 years are of little benefit to patients who had no polyps found on adequate examination; however, repeat colonoscopies do benefit patients when the baseline examination was compromised, ...

Cell's recycling center implicated in division decisions

16 hours ago

Most cells do not divide unless there is enough oxygen present to support their offspring, but certain cancer cells and other cell types circumvent this rule. Researchers at The Johns Hopkins University have now identified ...

User comments