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Breast Cancer Research and Treatment

, Volume 139, Issue 2, pp 311–316 | Cite as

Micro-computed tomography (Micro-CT): a novel approach for intraoperative breast cancer specimen imaging

  • Rong Tang
  • Julliette M. Buckley
  • Leopoldo Fernandez
  • Suzanne Coopey
  • Owen Aftreth
  • James Michaelson
  • Mansi Saksena
  • Lan Lei
  • Michelle Specht
  • Michele Gadd
  • Yukako Yagi
  • Elizabeth Rafferty
  • Elena Brachtel
  • Barbara L. SmithEmail author
Preclinical study

Abstract

Intraoperative radiographic examination of breast specimens is commonly performed to confirm excision of image-detected breast lesions, but it is not reliable for assessing margin status. A more accurate method of intraoperative breast specimen imaging is needed. Micro-CT provides quantitative imaging parameters, image rotation, and virtual “slicing” of intact breast specimens. We explored the use of micro-CT for assessment of a variety of clinical breast specimens. Specimens were evaluated with a table top micro-CT scanner, Skyscan 1173 (Skyscan, Belgium), with a 40–130 kV, 8 W X-ray source. Skyscan software for 3D image analysis (Dataviewer and CTVox) was employed to review 3D graphics of specimens. Scanning for 7 min and another 7 min for image reconstruction provided the desired resolution for breast specimens. Breast lumpectomy specimens, shaved cavity margins, mastectomy specimens, and axillary lymph nodes were imaged by micro-CT. The micro-CT images could be rotated in all directions and cross sections of internal portions of specimens could be visualized from any angle. This provided information about spatial orientation of masses and calcifications relative to margins in intact lumpectomy specimens. Micro-CT is a potentially useful tool for assessment of breast cancer specimens, allowing real-time analysis of tumor location in breast lumpectomy specimens or shaved cavity margins. Micro-CT may also be useful for assessing sentinel lymph nodes and mastectomy specimens.

Keywords

Micro-CT Breast cancer Lumpectomy margins Lymph nodes Real-time analysis 

Notes

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rong Tang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Julliette M. Buckley
    • 1
  • Leopoldo Fernandez
    • 1
  • Suzanne Coopey
    • 1
  • Owen Aftreth
    • 1
  • James Michaelson
    • 1
    • 3
  • Mansi Saksena
    • 4
  • Lan Lei
    • 1
  • Michelle Specht
    • 1
  • Michele Gadd
    • 1
  • Yukako Yagi
    • 3
  • Elizabeth Rafferty
    • 4
  • Elena Brachtel
    • 3
  • Barbara L. Smith
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Division of Surgical Oncology, Gillette Center for Women’s CancersMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  2. 2.Division of Breast Surgery, Hunan Provincial Tumor HospitalThe Affiliated Tumor Hospital of Xiangya Medical School of Central South UniversityChangshaChina
  3. 3.Department of PathologyMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  4. 4.Department of RadiologyMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA

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