Hong Kong Med J 2013;19:294–9 | Number 4, August 2013 | Epub 8 Jul 2013
DOI: 10.12809/hkmj133928
Impact of magnetic resonance imaging on preoperative planning for breast cancer surgery
Y Law, Polly SY Cheung, Silvia Lau, Gladys G Lo
Department of Surgery, Queen Mary Hospital, Pokfulam, Hong Kong
OBJECTIVES. To review the impact of preoperative breast magnetic resonance imaging on the management of planned surgery, and the appropriateness of any resulting alterations.
DESIGN. Retrospective review.
SETTING. A private hospital in Hong Kong.
PATIENTS. For the 147 consecutive biopsy-proven breast cancer patients who underwent preoperative magnetic resonance imaging to determine tumour extent undergoing operation by a single surgeon between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 2009, the impact of magnetic resonance imaging findings was reviewed in terms of management alterations and their appropriateness.
RESULTS. The most common indication for breast magnetic resonance imaging was the presence of multiple indeterminate shadows on ultrasound scans (53%), followed by ill-defined border of the main tumour on ultrasound scans (19%). In 66% (97 out of 147) of the patients, the extent of the operation was upgraded. Upgrading entailed: lumpectomy to wider lumpectomy (23 out of 97), lumpectomy to mastectomy (47 out of 97), lumpectomy to bilateral lumpectomy (15 out of 97), and other (12 out of 97). Mostly, these management changes were because magnetic resonance imaging showed more extensive disease (n=29), additional cancer foci (n=39), or contralateral disease (n=24). In five instances, upgrading was due to patient preference. In 34% (50 out of 147) of the patients, there was no change in the planned operation. Regarding 97 of the patients having altered management, in 12 the changes were considered inappropriately extensive (due to false-positive magnetic resonance imaging findings). In terms of magnetic resonance imaging detection of more extensive, multifocal, multicentric, or contralateral disease, the false-positive rate was 13% and false-negative rate 7%. Corresponding rates for sensitivity and specificity were 95% and 81%, using the final pathology as the gold standard.
CONCLUSIONS. Preoperative magnetic resonance imaging had a clinically significant and mostly correct impact on management plans. Magnetic resonance imaging should be included as part of the preoperative investigation in patients planned for breast-conserving surgery, in whom there are doubts about the extent of the tumours based on conventional assessment.
Key words: Breast neoplasms; Magnetic resonance imaging; Preoperative care
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