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Initial clinical results with a fusion prototype for mammography and three-dimensional ultrasound with a standard mammography system and a standard ultrasound probe
20 September 2018 (online)
Combinations of different imaging techniques in fusion devices appear to be associated with improvements in diagnostic assessment.
The aim of this study was to test the feasibility of using an automated standard three-dimensional (3D) ultrasound device fused with standard mammography for the first time in breast cancer patients.
Material and methods:
Digital mammograms and 3D automated ultrasound Images were obtained in 23 patients with highly suspicious breast lesions. A recently developed fusion machine consisting of an ABVS 3D ultrasound transducer from an Acuson S2000 machine and a conventional Mammomat Inspiration device (both Siemens Healthcare GmbH, Erlangen, Germany) were used for the purpose. The feasibility of the examinations, imaging coverage, and patients' experience of the procedure were examined. The presented method and imaging system are part of a research project and are not commercially available.
In 15 out of 19 patients, the region of interest with the tumor marked in the mammogram was visible on ultrasound. The examination was experienced positively by the patients, with no unexpected pain or injury. The examination was time-saving and well tolerated.
In conclusion, we have shown initial clinical feasibility of an ultrasound/radiography fusion prototype with good localization and evaluation of the regions of interest. The combined examination was well tolerated. The simultaneous evaluation with mammography and ultrasound imaging may be able to improve detection and reduce examiner-related variability.