New imaging approach accurately predicts breast Cancer recurrence

August 13, 2008

A high-resolution imaging method can accurately predict the risk of tumor recurrence in women.

A high-resolution imaging method can accurately predict the risk of tumor recurrence in women with invasive breast cancer, researchers report in the July issue of Radiology.

Ka-Loh Li, PhD, from the University of California San Francisco, and colleagues retrospectively reviewed high-spatial-resolution signal enhancement ratio (SER) gadolinium-enhanced magnetic resonance images acquired with a three time point high-resolution method from 48 women who underwent neoadjuvant therapy for invasive breast cancers from 1995 to 2002.

The researchers found that disease recurrence was strongly predicted by breast tumor volume and the volume of cancerous breast tissue infiltrating into the parenchyma. Of the 20 patients with recurrence, 75% were identified as having a high risk of recurrence and all nine patients who died were identified as having a 100% risk of recurrence. None of the patients without recurrence were misidentified as being at high risk of recurrence. Of the three prechemotherapy variables (total tumor volume, tumor volumes with high, and low SER), only the low SER and high SER tumor volumes were significant and independent predictors of recurrence.
“High-spatial-resolution SER imaging may improve prediction for patients at high risk for disease recurrence and death,” Li and colleagues conclude.

Li KL, Partridge SC, Joe BN, et al. Invasive breast cancer: predicting disease recurrence by using high-spatial-resolution signal enhancement ratio imaging. Radiology. 2008;248:79-87.