Breast Ultrasound

  • Sharon L. MulvaghEmail author
  • Tara L. Anderson


Breast ultrasound is primarily utilized in conjunction with diagnostic mammography to evaluate breast concerns identified by the patient or during clinical breast exam, and to further characterize findings identified on mammogram, breast MRI, and molecular breast imaging. Breast symptoms evaluated by ultrasound include breast pain, nipple discharge, and palpable masses. Ultrasound is also used to guide breast biopsies when the targeted lesion is well seen by ultrasound and occasionally to evaluate breast implants [1]. At some institutions, whole breast ultrasound is being utilized for cancer screening in select groups of patients, including those at high risk for breast cancer who are unable to undergo MRI, pregnant women, and women with increased breast density [2]. Breast ultrasound is rarely performed in isolation without concurrent mammography. Primary exceptions are for patients under 30 years old with a focal area of concern, clinical signs of mastitis with concern for breast abscess, and for targeted follow-up. Point-of-care breast ultrasound should be followed by formal breast diagnostic evaluation performed by an experienced breast imager.


Breast Cyst Abscess Malignancy Palpable 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medicine, Division of CardiologyDalhousie UniversityHalifaxCanada
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyMayo Clinic Health SystemAustinUSA

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