Dual-head Gamma Camera Increases Breast Tumor Detection

December 10, 2008
Chris Cole

According to the newly published results of a recent Mayo Clinic study, breast tumors of less than 2cm in size can accurately be detected by a dual-headed gamma camera used during molecular breast imaging.

According to the newly published results of a recent Mayo Clinic study, breast tumors of less than 2cm in size can accurately be detected by a dual-headed gamma camera used during molecular breast imaging (MBI). In 150 patients with suspicious lesions smaller than 2cm in size, dual-head MBI confirmed 115 of 128 cancers in 88 patients, with a sensitivity rate of 90%.

“Dual head MBI involves a very light, pain-free compression of the breast. Two views of each breast are performed, lasting for about 10 minutes per view,” explained lead author Carrie B. Hruska, MD. “The patient receives an IV injection of a commonly used radiotracer and this tracer circulates throughout the body and is preferentially absorbed in the breast cancer.”

With a good specificity and cost similar to digital mammography, dual head MBI could provide an beneficial second test to many women, including those who have very dense breast on mammography and are at increased risk of developing breast cancer, said Hruska. "MBI is still in the research stages, but it is expected to become more widely available in the future," Hruska stated.

Check out the abstract from the study results published in the December issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology.

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