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Diagnostic accuracy of cone-beam breast computed tomography: a systematic review and diagnostic meta-analysis.

A new interesting article has been published in Eur Radiol. 2018 Sep 25. doi: 10.1007/s00330-018-5711-9. and titled:

Diagnostic accuracy of cone-beam breast computed tomography: a systematic review and diagnostic meta-analysis.

Authors of this article are:
Uhlig J Uhlig A Biggemann L Fischer U Lotz J Wienbeck S.

A summary of the article is shown below:
PURPOSE: To review the published evidence on cone-beam breast computed tomography (CBBCT) and summarize its diagnostic accuracy for breast lesion assessment.MATERIALS AND METHODS: A systematic literature search was conducted using the EMBASE, MEDLINE and CENTRAL libraries. Studies were included if reporting sensitivity and specificity for discrimination of benign and malignant breast lesions via breast CT. Sensitivity and specificity were jointly modeled using a bivariate approach calculating summary areas under the receiver-operating characteristics curve (AUC). All analyses were separately performed for non-contrast and contrast-enhanced CBBCT (NC-CBBCT, CE-CBBCT).RESULTS: A total of 362 studies were screened, of which 6 with 559 patients were included. All studies were conducted between 2015 and 2018 and evaluated female participants. Four of six studies included dense and very dense breasts with a high proportion of microcalcifications. For NC-CBBCT, pooled sensitivity was 0.789 (95% CI: 0.66-0.89) and pooled specificity was 0.697 (95% CI: 0.471-0.851), both showing considerable significant between-study heterogeneity (I2 = 89.4%, I2 = 94.7%, both p < 0.001). Partial AUC for NC-CBBCT was 0.817. For CE-CBBCT, pooled sensitivity was 0.899 (95% CI: 0.785-0.956) and pooled specificity was 0.788 (95% CI: 0.709-0.85), both exhibiting non-significant moderate between-study heterogeneity (I2 = 57.3%, p = 0.0527; I2 = 53.1%, p = 0.0738). Partial AUC for CE-CBBCT was 0.869.CONCLUSION: The evidence available for CBBCT tends to show superior diagnostic performance for CE-CBBCT over NC-CBBCT regarding sensitivity, specificity and partial AUC. Diagnostic accuracy of CE-CBBCT was numerically comparable to that of breast MRI with meta-analyses reporting sensitivity of 0.9 and specificity of 0.72.KEY POINTS: • CE-CBBCT rather than NC-CBBCT should be used for assessment of breast lesions for its higher diagnostic accuracy. • CE-CBBCT diagnostic performance was comparable to published results on breast MRI, thus qualifying CE-CBBCT as a potential imaging alternative for patients with MRI contraindications.
Check out the article’s website on Pubmed for more information:



This article is a good source of information and a good way to become familiar with topics such as: Breast;Cone-beam computed tomography;Contrast media;Meta-analysis;Radiation dosage.

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