Impact of Strain Elastography on BI-RADS classification in small invasive lobular carcinoma

Angelica Rita Chiorean, Mădălina Brîndușa Szep, Diana Sorina Feier, Magdalena Duma, Marco Andrei Chiorean, Ștefan Strilciuc


Aims: The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of strain elastography (SE) on the Breast Imaging Reporting Data System (BI-RADS) classification depending on invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC) lesion size.

Materials and methods: We performed a retrospective analysis on a sample of 152 female subjects examined between January 2010 – January 2017. SE was performed on all patients and ILC was subsequently diagnosed by surgical or ultrasound-guided biopsy. BI-RADS 1, 2, 6 and Tsukuba BGR cases were omitted. BI-RADS scores were recorded before and after the use of SE. The differences between scores were compared to the ILC tumor size using nonparametric tests and logistic binary regression. We controlled for age, focality, clinical assessment, heredo-collateral antecedents, B-mode and Doppler ultrasound examination. An ROC curve was used to identify the optimal cut-off point for size in relationship to BI-RADS classificationdifference using Youden’s index.

Results: The histological subtypes of ILC lesions (n=180) included in the sample were luminal A (70%, n=126), luminal B (27.78%, n=50), triple negative (1.67%, n=3) and HER2+ (0.56%, n=1). The BI-RADS classification was higher when SE was performed (Z=- 6.629, p<0.000). The ROC curve identified a cut-off point of 13 mm for size in relationship to BI-RADS classification difference (J=0.670, p<0.000). Small ILC tumors were 17.92% more likely to influence BI-RADS classification (p<0.000).

Conclusions: SE offers enhanced BI-RADS classification in small ILC tumors (<13 mm). Sonoelastography brings added value to B-mode breast ultrasound as an adjacent to mammography in breast cancer screening.


breast; ultrasonography; sonoelastography; invasive lobular carcinoma

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