Breast composition : measurement and clinical use

Ekpo, EU, Hogg, P ORCID:, Highnam, R and McEntee, MF 2015, 'Breast composition : measurement and clinical use' , Radiography, 21 (4) , pp. 324-333.

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Breast density is a measure of the extent of radiodense fibroglandular tissue in the breast. The risk of developing breast cancer and the risk of missing cancer at screening rise with higher breast density. In this paper, the historical background to breast density measurement is outlined and current evidence based practice is explained. The relevance of breast density knowledge to mammographic practice and image interpretation is considered in the light of clinical assessment and notification of mammographic breast density (MBD). The current work also discusses risk stratification for decision-making regarding screening frequency and better modalities for earlier detection of breast cancer in the dense breast. Automated volumetric approaches are explained while ultrasound, digital breast tomosynthesis, molecular breast imaging, and magnetic resonance imaging are introduced as valuable adjuncts to digital mammography for imaging the dense breast. The work concludes on the important note that screened women should be notified of their breast density, and such notification should be accompanied with clear and adequate information about breast density and cancer risk, strategies associated with lower MBD, as well as best screening intervals and pathways for women with dense breasts. Adoption of these strategies may be crucial to early detection and treatment of cancer and improving survival from the disease.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Health and Wellbeing
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Health Sciences Research
Journal or Publication Title: Radiography
Publisher: Elsevier
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1078-8174
Related URLs:
Funders: Non funded research
Depositing User: P Hogg
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2015 17:20
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2022 19:40

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