Contrast-enhanced MR imaging in patients with BI-RADS 3-5 microcalcifications
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The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in patients with microcalcifications classed as Breast Imaging Reporting and Data Systems (BI-RADS) 3–5.
Materials and methods.
Fifty-five patients with mammographic microcalcifications classified as BI-RADS categories 3, 4 or 5 underwent MRI and biopsy with stereotactic vacuum-assisted biopsy (VAB). Our gold standard was microhistology in all cases and histology with histological grading in patients who underwent surgery. Patients with a microhistological diagnosis of benign lesions underwent mammographic follow-up for at least 12 months. MRI was performed with a 1.5-Tesla (T) unit, and T1 coronal three-dimensional (3D) fast low-angle shot sequences were acquired before and after injection of paramagnetic contrast agent (0.1 mmol/kg). MRI findings, according to the Fisher score, were classified into BI-RADS classes. In patients with cancer who underwent surgery, we retrospectively compared the extension of the mammographic and MRI findings with histological extension.
Histology revealed 26 ductal in situ cancers (DCIS) and ductal microinvasive cancers (DCmic), three atypical ductal hyperplasias (ADH) and 26 benign conditions. Histological grading of the 26 patients with cancer revealed four cases of G1, 11 cases of G2 and 11 cases of G3. If we consider mammographic BI-RADS category 3 as benign and BI-RADS 4 and 5 as malignant, mammography had 77% sensitivity, 59% specificity, 63% positive predictive value (PPV), 74% negative predictive value (NPV) and 67.2% diagnostic accuracy. If we consider MRI BI-RADS categories 1, 2 and 3 as benign and 4 and 5 as malignant, MRI had 73% sensitivity, 76% specificity, 73% PPV, 76% NPV and 74.5% diagnostic accuracy. As regards disease extension, mammography had 45% sensitivity and MRI had 84.6% sensitivity.
Mammography and stereotactic biopsy still remain the only techniques for characterising microcalcifications. MRI cannot be considered a diagnostic tool for evaluating microcalcifications. It is, however, useful for identifying DCIS with more aggressive histological grades. An important application of MRI in patients with DCIS associated with suspicious microcalcifications could be to evaluate disease extension after a microhistological diagnosis of malignancy, as it allows a more accurate presurgical planning.
Key wordsBreast MRI Microcalcifications DCIS
RM mammaria dinamica nello studio di pazienti con microcalcificazioni BIRADS 3-5
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