BSGI Is A Strong Adjunct Imaging Modality To Mammography, Ultrasound

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Breast-Specific Gamma Imaging

Study results recently presented at the Radiological Society of North America 93rd Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting demonstrated the value of Breast-Specific Gamma Imaging (BSGI) as a strong adjunctive imaging modality to mammography and breast ultrasound. The study, performed by Dr. Jean Weigert, Director of Breast Imaging at Mandell and Blau MDs PC in New Britain, CT, demonstrated the very high predictive values of BSGI for identifying breast cancer.

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Breast-Specific Gamma Imaging (BSGI) is molecular imaging of the breast, a novel physiologic approach in breast diagnostics that is performed with a high-resolution small field-of-view gamma camera and Tc-Sestamibi. According to Dr. Weigert, the radioisotope is taken up by cells with increased metabolic activity, such as the rapidly dividing cells in breast cancers; and areas of concern present at highly focalized areas of radiotracer uptake, or hotspots.

The study reviewed 512 women referred to BSGI due to an indeterminate mammogram and/or ultrasound. A history of breast cancer or new diagnosis of breast cancer as well as family history also warranted study. Additional mammography work-up, second-look ultrasound or MRI was used as needed to further evaluate areas of increased radiotracer uptake on BSGI.

Eighty-one percent of the patients had 6 to 24 month follow-up with no new findings. Ninety-seven biopsies were performed, of which 46 were positive and 51 were negative; five in patients with negative studies. In patients with newly diagnosed cancer, BSGI findings resulted in a change in surgical management in seven patients, identification of four occult contralateral cancers; and six patients underwent mastectomy due to discovery of more extensive disease. The smallest cancer identified was 5mm and no infiltrating lobular carcinomas were missed.

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