Women's Imaging Insider

Dear Women's Imaging Insider,

Do you have trouble delineating between benign and malignant breast lesions on MRI? A group of researchers from the Netherlands may be able to help you out with a new technique they've developed.

In an e-poster from ECR 2017 that won a magna cum laude award, the researchers compared the reproducibility and diagnostic utility of three alternative methods comparing the apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values in regions of interest (ROIs) standardized by fixing both size and shape to cover the whole lesion. Fixed size and shape ROIs are comparable with whole-lesion ROIs, they found.

Also from ECR 2017, digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) came into the spotlight again. Can it replace screening mammography or not? Some called it the "most promising tool" available in a symposium dedicated to breast health. However, a number of issues need further study, including whether DBT is finding clinically important cancers, the logistics of incorporating the technology into department workflow, and reducing reading time.

At the same meeting, Italian researchers found DBT is a valuable tool for a variety of other applications, including staging surgical breast cancer treatment. When used with digital mammography, DBT cut the re-excision rate in women who underwent breast cancer surgery by half compared with those who were staged with digital mammography and ultrasound: from 10% to 5%.

Market analyst Stephen Holloway has chimed in on the women's imaging market. He contends that breast MRI has made little impact on the commercial MRI market, despite holding the greatest potential and clinical value. He says this is for a few reasons, including regulation and reimbursement. Read more.

Another article in your Women's Imaging Community discusses this topic from the clinical side. Screening breast MRI boosts early diagnosis of cancer in all women, not just those at high risk, pioneer Dr. Christiane Kuhl has found. The research suggests the use of breast MRI could be expanded beyond its traditional application in high-risk women, helping to catch cancer earlier in women of all ages and risk levels.

In other news, a combination of phantoms, an automatic software tool, and a statistical process are effective and applicable on a large scale to vet the image quality and reproducibility for any type of digital mammography system.

Be sure to head on over to the Women's Imaging Community to read more articles. And as always, I enjoy hearing from you, so contact me anytime.

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