Dr. Michael Garwood of the Center for Magnetic Resonance Research Medical School, Minneapolis, and colleagues note that 1H spectroscopy is particularly proficient in detecting choline-containing compounds, elevated levels of which are found in neoplastic breast tissue.
However, they add, "performing in vivo 1H MR spectroscopy of the breast can be technically challenging."
To evaluate the approach, four blinded radiologists retrospectively evaluated 55 biopsy-confirmed findings of lesions in 55 patients. In all, 35 were invasive carcinoma and the remaining 20 were benign.
The radiologists' initial interpretation was based on the lesion's morphological features and time-signal intensity curve. A second interpretation also took total choline-containing compounds, as assessed by 1H spectroscopy, into account.
The addition of the 1H information resulted in significantly higher sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, and agreement among the radiologists. For example, the total number of missed cancers fell from 25 at the first interpretation to 11 at the second.
The researchers call for larger studies, but conclude that the method can help differentiation between benign and malignant breast lesions.
Last Updated: 2005-07-28 11:11:28 -0400 (Reuters Health)
MR more likely than mammo to expose multiple malignancies in dense breasts, October 31, 2004
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