Suspicious screening mammograms are often further evaluated with spot compression views, and if those views are negative, clinicians often presume that the lesion was an artifact from overlapping tissue, according to Dr. Betty Tuong, of the University of Toronto, and colleagues.
There is an increasing trend toward ordering breast ultrasound despite this negative workup, but it doesn't really help, Tuong's group found.
The researchers included data from abnormal mammograms, negative follow-up spot views, and ensuing breast ultrasound performed between 2004 and 2013. Of 1,865 cases, 1,600 were classified as BI-RADS 1/2, 210 as BI-RADS 3, and 55 as BI-RADS 4/5. Of these 1,865 cases, six had cancer (all of which were BI-RADS 4/5).