By Kate Madden Yee, staff writer
November 5, 2013

At this year's RSNA meeting, expect a lot of buzz about breast ultrasound and digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT), with everything from refresher courses to scientific sessions devoted to these technologies. But also get ready for animated discussion about how best to image dense breasts and also the pros and cons of breast cancer screening.

Kick the week off at a scientific session dedicated to diagnostic breast ultrasound (Sunday, December 1, 10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m., SSA01, Arie Crown Theater). Presenters will touch on topics that include how 3D breast ultrasound compares in terms of diagnostic yield to MRI, automated breast ultrasound's performance compared with handheld ultrasound in detecting suspicious calcifications, and whether shear-wave elastography findings can predict lymph node involvement in women with invasive breast cancer. And don't miss Sunday's refresher course on current issues in breast cancer screening (2:00 p.m.-3:30 p.m., RC115, Room S406A).

Check out Monday morning's multisession course on the radiologic features of gynecologic cancers (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., MSRO24, Room S103CD) and some refresher courses on first-trimester ultrasound and the medical physics of mammography (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC210 and RC221, Rooms S405AB and S404AB, respectively). Also on Monday morning will be a scientific session devoted to breast MRI (8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., VSBR21, Arie Crown Theater).

Monday afternoon scientific sessions will focus on breast MRI and digital breast tomosynthesis (both from 3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m., SSE01, Arie Crown Theater, and SSE02, Room E450A, respectively). End the day with a special interest session all about breast density (4:30 p.m.-6:00 p.m., SPSI24, Room E451A).

Tuesday's program starts with a controversy session on the pros and cons of treating fibroids with uterine artery embolization versus high-intensity focused ultrasound (7:15 a.m.-8:15 a.m., SPSC30, Room E350), and scientific sessions that explore emerging technologies in breast imaging (8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., VSBR31, Arie Crown Theater) and nuclear and molecular breast imaging (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., SSG01, Room E451A).

Tuesday afternoon, check out a scientific session that will investigate breast screening and density, another that will explore breast CT, and a third that will investigate pregnancy imaging and its complications (3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.; SSJ01, Arie Crown Theater; SSJ02, Room E450A; and SSJ11, Room E351, respectively).

What's on for Wednesday? From 8:30 a.m. until 10:00 a.m., refresher courses will be devoted to advances in gynecologic ultrasound (RC510, Room S405AB), high-resolution radionuclide breast imaging (RC511, Room S505AB), and fallopian tube catheterization (RC550, Room E260). One Wednesday morning scientific session will be all about digital breast tomosynthesis -- specifically, screening outcomes (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., SSK01, Arie Crown Theater). In the afternoon, attendees can explore multimodality breast imaging (3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m., SSM02, Room E451A).

Thursday morning will feature refresher courses on gynecologic ultrasound (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC607, Room N228) and CT of the acute female pelvis (RC608C, Room E450A), as well as new breast imaging strategies (RC617, Room S504CD) and how to increase your gynecological MRI referral base (RC629, Room E353B). Also on Thursday morning, a scientific session will investigate breast cancer screening with ultrasound (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., SSQ01, Arie Crown Theater).

To wrap up the meeting, check out Friday's refresher course on imaging and treating gynecologic cancer -- what really works and what is cost-effective (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC807, Room N226), as well as a scientific session on issues in breast cancer screening, including whether biennial screening affects a woman's prognosis (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., SST01, Room E450B).

For highlights of the many women's imaging presentations at the RSNA 2013 meeting, read on. And to view the RSNA's list of abstracts for this year's scientific and educational program, click here.

Scientific and Educational Presentations
3D ultrasound feasible for breast cancer screening
Sunday, December 1 | 10:55 a.m.-11:05 a.m. | SSA01-02 | Arie Crown Theater
3D ultrasound is a reliable imaging technique for the detection and classification of benign and malignant breast tumors, according to Dutch researchers.
Shear-wave elastography indicates lymph node involvement
Sunday, December 1 | 11:55 a.m.-12:05 p.m. | SSA01-08 | Arie Crown Theater
Shear-wave elastography is a predictor of lymph node metastasis in women with invasive breast cancer, according to researchers from the U.K.'s University of Dundee.
Outpatient UAE viable alternative to inpatient procedures
Sunday, December 1 | 12:30 p.m.-1:00 p.m. | LL-GUS-SU1A | Lakeside Learning Center
Patients say that outpatient uterine artery embolization (UAE) for fibroids is a viable alternative to inpatient procedures, according to Canadian research to be presented during this Sunday poster session.
Tomo is accurate in measuring invasive breast cancer
Sunday, December 1 | 12:30 p.m.-1:00 p.m. | LL-BRS-SU1A | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, British researchers will discuss how digital breast tomosynthesis can help clinicians identify the size of invasive cancers and therefore choose the most appropriate treatment.
7-tesla MRI matches 3-tesla for breast imaging
Monday, December 2 | 8:50 a.m.-9:00 a.m. | VSBR21-02 | Arie Crown Theater
7-tesla MRI matches or surpasses 3-tesla imaging in terms of quality and uniformity in breast imaging, according to researchers from NYU Langone Medical Center.
Abridged breast MRI protocol finds cancer just fine
Monday, December 2 | 9:30 a.m.-9:40 a.m. | VSBR21-06 | Arie Crown Theater
A shorter breast MRI protocol is better tolerated by patients, improves throughput, and has high sensitivity for detecting known ductal carcinoma in situ and invasive carcinoma, New York-based researchers have found.
Tomo beats mammography for finding early-stage cancers
Monday, December 2 | 3:20 p.m.-3:30 p.m. | SSE02-03 | Room E450A
In this scientific session, researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital will present a study that compared the performance of tomosynthesis and conventional mammography in finding and characterizing biopsy-proven invasive cancers.
MRgFUS therapy for fibroids leads to long-term relief
Monday, December 2 | 3:20 p.m.-3:30 p.m. | SSE11-03 | Room E353B
MR-guided focused ultrasound surgery (MRgFUS) for symptomatic uterine fibroids leads to long-term symptom relief, according to study results to be discussed in this Monday afternoon presentation.
Tomosynthesis identifies BI-RADS 2 and 3 density cancers
Monday, December 2 | 3:30 p.m.-3:40 p.m. | SSE02-04 | Room E450A
Breast tomosynthesis performs particularly well at visualizing noncalcification breast cancers in patients who are in the middle of the dense tissue spectrum, Connecticut researchers have found.
Tomo makes final cancer assessment categories more accurate
Monday, December 2 | 3:50 p.m.-4:00 p.m. | SSE02-06 | Room E450A
Using tomosynthesis for diagnostic breast imaging can reduce the number of patients categorized as BI-RADS 3 -- and therefore reduce the number of women who return for follow-up, according to research to be presented in this Monday afternoon session.
Synthetic 2D mammograms comparable to conventional FFDM with tomo
Tuesday, December 3 | 10:00 a.m.-10:10 a.m. | VSBR31-08 | Arie Crown Theater
Radiologists reviewing synthetic 2D mammograms produced on a tomosynthesis system had reading performance comparable to those interpreting standard full-field digital mammography (FFDM) in combination with tomosynthesis, according to a study to be presented Tuesday.
Tomosynthesis adds to mammography interpretation time
Tuesday, December 3 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | VSBR31-10 | Arie Crown Theater
Adding tomosynthesis to mammography for breast cancer screening increases interpretation time when compared with conventional digital mammography alone, according to researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital.
Tomosynthesis: An alternative to MRI for evaluating breast masses?
Tuesday, December 3 | 10:50 a.m.-11:00 a.m. | VSBR31-12 | Arie Crown Theater
In this Tuesday morning scientific session, researchers from the University of Pittsburgh will present findings from a study that compared lesion visibility and diagnostic accuracy using MRI, tomosynthesis, conebeam CT, and full-field digital mammography.
BSGI improves sensitivity of mammography, ultrasound
Tuesday, December 3 | 11:20 a.m.-11:30 a.m. | SSG01-06 | Room E451A
Adding breast-specific gamma imaging (BSGI) to mammography and ultrasound improves the ability of these modalities to find cancer, according to a study that will be presented at RSNA 2013 on Tuesday.
Lower-dose MBI still finds more cancers in dense tissue
Tuesday, December 3 | 11:40 a.m.-11:50 a.m. | SSG01-08 | Room E451A
Using lower doses of radiopharmaceuticals in molecular breast imaging (MBI) works just as well as higher doses, researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, have found.
Can low-energy contrast mammo replace standard imaging?
Tuesday, December 3 | 12:15 p.m.-12:45 p.m. | LL-BRS-TU4A | Lakeside Learning Center
In this poster presentation, researchers will describe how low-energy contrast-enhanced digital mammography produced comparable images to standard mammography and therefore could replace the standard technique.
Women with dense breast tissue want supplemental tests
Tuesday, December 3 | 3:00 p.m.-3:10 p.m. | SSJ01-01 | Arie Crown Theater
Women want to know their breast density and have access to supplemental tests if their tissue is dense, whether they are patients at county hospitals or outpatient radiology clinics, according to research to be presented in this Tuesday afternoon session.
Contrast breast CT shows promise for visualizing malignant masses
Tuesday, December 3 | 3:10 p.m.-3:20 p.m. | SSJ02-02 | Room E450A
Is contrast-enhanced dedicated breast CT better than tomosynthesis and digital mammography for visualizing suspicious lesions? Researchers from the University of California, Davis Medical Center will address this question during this Tuesday scientific session.
High-resolution breast CT outperforms FFDM and tomo
Tuesday, December 3 | 3:30 p.m.-3:40 p.m. | SSJ02-04 | Room E450A
High-resolution breast CT produces 3D images that are better than full-field digital mammography (FFDM) and tomosynthesis, and it does so at acceptable dose levels for screening procedures, according to German researchers.
Tomosynthesis reduces recall rate by 30%
Wednesday, December 4 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | SSK01-01 | Arie Crown Theater
In this scientific session, researchers will present study findings that suggest adding tomosynthesis to mammography screening could reduce the recall rate by 30%.
Tomosynthesis speeds diagnostic workups
Wednesday, December 4 | 11:50 a.m.-12:00 p.m. | SSK01-09 | Arie Crown Theater
Breast tomosynthesis speeds diagnostic workups, resulting in more efficient patient throughput and use of resources, according to Yale University researchers.
US confirmation of suspect breast MRI means aggressive cancer
Wednesday, December 4 | 3:10 p.m.-3:20 p.m. | SSM02-02 | Room E451A
When a suspicious breast MRI lesion has an ultrasound correlate, it is more likely to be an aggressive cancer, according to a study to be presented during this Wednesday afternoon session.
Techs perform screening breast ultrasound just as well as physicians
Thursday, December 5 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | SSQ01-01 | Arie Crown Theater
Technologists perform handheld screening breast ultrasound just as well as physicians, which can help a radiology department by freeing up radiologists' time for other tasks, according to a study to be presented on Thursday at RSNA 2013.
Radiologists equally confident in automated and handheld ultrasound
Thursday, December 5 | 11:00 a.m.-11:10 a.m. | SSQ01-04 | Arie Crown Theater
Radiologists show equal confidence in imaging suspicious masses with automated breast volumetric scanning and handheld breast ultrasound mammography, according to researchers from the University of North Carolina.
7-tesla MRI shows potential for ultrahigh-field pelvic imaging
Friday, December 6 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | SST07-01 | Room E351
Dedicated 7-tesla MRI of the female pelvis shows the feasibility and potential of in vivo, ultrahigh-field pelvic imaging, which could help clinicians more accurately diagnose pelvic parenchymatous and vasculature disease, according to a study from Germany.
MRI offers clinical picture of pelvic floor after pregnancy
Friday, December 6 | 11:30 a.m.-11:40 a.m. | SST07-07 | Room E351
After a first pregnancy, women who had a vaginal delivery were five to six times more likely to experience measurable pelvic prolapse than women who had a cesarean delivery, in a study from Portland researchers.