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Breast Cancer: Sensitivity and Specificity

Introduction: None written.

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Tags: Neoplasm Tag this Diagnosis.


Population / CalculatorPrevalence Comments / Study / Link
Nipple discharge 6% 6-12% of patients with unilateral nipple discharge have breast carcinoma
Screening Population 0.5% J Natl Cancer Inst 2000 Jun 21;92(12):971-6. PMID 10861308
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The sensitivity and specificity of findings for Breast Cancer are listed below. See the left navigation bar to change the display.

Sensitive and Specific Findings

Finding SensitivitySpecificity Comments, Study
Mammography, Screening Edit 86%96%

Sensitivity and specificity of mammography vary widely from study to study

Study: Influence of personal characteristics of individual women on sensitivity and specificity of mammography in the Million Women Study: cohort study.

Banks E; Reeves G; Beral V; Bull D; Crossley B; Simmonds M; Hilton E; Bailey S; Barrett N; Briers P; English R; Jackson A; Kutt E; Lavelle J; Rockall L; Wallis MG; Wilson M; Patnick J

BMJ 2004 Aug 28;329(7464):477.

PMID 15331472

Diagnostic performance of digital versus film mammography for breast-cancer screening.

Pisano ED; Gatsonis C; Hendrick E; Yaffe M; Baum JK; Acharyya S; Conant EF; Fajardo LL; Bassett L; D'Orsi C; Jong R; Rebner M

N Engl J Med 2005 Oct 27;353(17):1773-83. Epub 2005 Sep 16.

PMID 16169887

Specific Findings

Finding SensitivitySpecificity Comments, Study
Clinical Breast Exam Edit 58.8%93.4%

in screening population by community practitioners

another similar study found spec = 99.4%

In the latter study, for diagnostic breast exams (i.e. for a complaint) specificity was only 68.7%.

Study: J Natl Cancer Inst 2000 Jun 21;92(12):971-6. PMID 10861308

J Gen Intern Med. 2007 Mar;22(3):332-7. PMID 17356964

MRI Edit 79%89%

Most studies have evaluated MRI in high risk populations.

Study: Table 1 of this paper has a summary of results from multiple studies comparing mammography to MRI for breast cancer detection in high risk patients

Breast MRI for cancer detection and characterization: a review of evidence-based clinical applications.

DeMartini W, Lehman C, Partridge S.

Acad Radiol. 2008 Apr;15(4):408-16.

PMID 18342764

Efficacy of MRI and mammography for breast-cancer screening in women with a familial or genetic predisposition.

Kriege et al

N Engl J Med. 2004 Jul 29;351(5):427-37.

PMID: 15282350

Sensitive Findings

Finding SensitivitySpecificity Comments, Study
Core Needle Biopsy Edit Sensitivity = 98%

versus open surgical biopsy

sensitivities were quite similar between ultrasound-guided and stereotactic biopsy

Study: Bruening W, et al. "Systematic Review: Comparative Effectiveness of Core-Needle and Open Surgical Biopsy to Diagnose Breast Lesions". Ann Int Med.

Findings With Unspecified Accuracy

Finding SensitivitySpecificity Comments, Study
Ultrasound Edit No accuracy specified.

Study: no study specified.

CA 15-3 Edit No accuracy specified.

Study: no study specified.