To review pathologic diagnoses of multiple enhancing lesions in a unilateral breast detected on dynamic helical computed tomography (CT)–mammography and to correlate imaging findings with pathologic results.
From May 1998 to July 2001, preoperative contrast-enhanced helical CT scanning of the breast was performed in 200 female patients clinically diagnosed with breast cancer. The patients were scanned in the prone position in a specially designed CT-compatible device, with rapid intravenous bolus injection of 100 mL contrast material. Three-dimensional maximum intensity projection images were reconstructed. The cases with multiple enhancing lesions in a unilateral breast were retrospectively reviewed. The maximum diameter of the largest stain in each breast was measured, the patterns of multiple enhancing lesions were classified, and imaging findings were correlated with surgical and pathologic outcomes.
Twenty-five of 200 (12.5%) patients (age range: 39–86 years, mean age: 56 years) showed multiple stains on CT–mammography. Two patients showed multiple stains in bilateral breasts. The maximum diameter of the largest stain in each breast raged from 5 to 55 mm (average: 22 mm). Among cases with multiple stains, 21 (78%) were shown to be invasive ductal carcinoma with multiple satellite cancer nodules. Four cases were ductal carcinoma in situ with multiple satellite nodules. One case revealed multiple fibroadenomas, and another showed intraductal papilloma.
Multiple enhancing lesions on CT–mammography in patients with breast cancer were relatively common, and most of them represented multiple cancer lesions. Dynamic CT–mammography is potentially useful in evaluating the spread of breast cancer.