Breast cancer screening method detects 90% of all cancers
Breast cancer screening method detects 90% of all cancers7 Apr 2015
The majority of all breast cancers can be definitively diagnosed using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This compares to the combined methods of mammography and ultrasound which detected the cancer only at 37.5%. This is the key finding of a study, carried out at the University Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine at the MedUni Vienna in cooperation with the University Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics and the Clinical Institute of Pathology.
"Our study clearly shows the superiority of magnetic resonance imaging over mammography and breast ultrasound examinations," says Thomas Helbich, who led the study with Christopher Riedl. "The superiority of MRI is also completely independent of the patient's age, gene mutation status and breast density."
Study details and outcomes
In 559 women at increased risk, a total of 1,365 screening examinations were carried out. There was one clear "winner": 90% of all breast cancers can be clearly detected by MRI. The combination of MRI and mammography increased the detection rate by just 5%. None of the cancers were detected by ultrasound alone. The results were similar for non-invasive cancers and for benign breast lesions.
“MRI really is the method to be recommended for detection of all cancer types”
"An MRI scan carried out once a year is therefore the only alternative for high-risk patients who have a strong family history of breast cancer to the surgical removal of the breast and ovaries," says Helbich. "This is by no means 'over-diagnosis', but rather a necessity”.
The results of the study should encourage the increased use of MRI for breast screening, says Helbich: "In light of these results, it is our duty to make women more aware of the fact that the use of mammography and ultrasound cannot detect all types of cancer. MRI really is the method to be recommended."Source: Science Daily