Clinical implications of subcategorizing BI-RADS 4 breast lesions associated with microcalcification: A radiology-pathology correlation study

Mary Ann Sanders, Lane Roland, Sunati Sahoo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

Currently radiologists have the option of subcategorizing BI-RADS 4 breast lesions into 4A (low suspicion for malignancy), 4B (intermediate suspicion of malignancy), and 4C (moderate concern, but not classic for malignancy). To determine the clinical significance of BI-RADS 4 subcategories and the common pathologic changes associated with these mammographic lesions, a retrospective review of 239 consecutive stereotactic-needle core biopsies (SNCB) for microcalcifications was performed. All 239 SNCBs were BI-RADS 4 lesions, and of these, 191 were subcategorized to 4A, 4B or 4C. Ninety-four of 191 (49%) were 4A, 73 (38%) were 4B, and 24 (13%) were 4C. Fibrocystic change was the most common finding (66/239; 28%) followed by ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) accounting for 23% of cases. This was followed by columnar cell alteration with or without atypia (47/239; 19%), and fibroadenoma (45/239; 19%). While 70% (17/24) of BI-RADS 4C category lesions were DCIS, only 21% (15/73) of BI-RADS 4B and 10% (10/94) of BI-RADS 4A were DCIS. Without sub-categorization, carcinoma was diagnosed in 23% (55/239) of all cases with BI-RADS 4. Therefore, subcategorizing BI-RADS 4 lesions is important since it not only benefits the patient and clinician in understanding the level of concern for carcinoma, but will also alert the pathologist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-31
Number of pages4
JournalBreast Journal
Volume16
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010

Keywords

  • BI-RADS
  • Columnar cell lesion
  • Microcalcifications
  • Stereotactic needle core biopsy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Surgery
  • Oncology

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