Breast contrast enhanced MR imaging: Semi-automatic detection of vascular map and predominant feeding vessel

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Abstract

Purpose: To obtain breast vascular map and to assess correlation between predominant feeding vessel and tumor location with a semi-automatic method compared to conventional radiologic reading. Methods: 148 malignant and 75 benign breast lesions were included. All patients underwent bilateral MR imaging. Written informed consent was obtained from the patients before MRI. The local ethics committee granted approval for this study. Semi-automatic breast vascular map and predominant vessel detection was performed on MRI, for each patient. Semi-automatic detection (depending on grey levels threshold manually chosen by radiologist) was compared with results of two expert radiologists; inter-observer variability and reliability of semi-automatic approach were assessed. Results: Anatomic analysis of breast lesions revealed that 20% of patients had masses in internal half, 50% in external half and the 30% in subareolar/central area. As regards the 44 tumors in internal half, based on radiologic consensus, 40 demonstrated a predominant feeding vessel (61% were supplied by internal thoracic vessels, 14% by lateral thoracic vessels, 16% by both thoracic vessels and 9% had no predominant feeding vessel - p<0.01), based on semi-automatic detection, 38 tumors demonstrated a predominant feeding vessel (66% were supplied by internal thoracic vessels, 11% by lateral thoracic vessels, 9% by both thoracic vessels and 14% had no predominant feeding vessel - p<0.01). As regards the 111 tumors in external half, based on radiologic consensus, 91 demonstrated a predominant feeding vessel (25% were supplied by internal thoracic vessels, 39% by lateral thoracic vessels, 18% by both thoracic vessels and 18% had no predominant feeding vessel - p<0.01), based on semi-automatic detection, 94 demonstrated a predominant feeding vessel (27% were supplied by internal thoracic vessels, 45% by lateral thoracic vessels, 4% by both thoracic vessels and 24% had no predominant feeding vessel - p<0.01). An excellent agreement between two radiologic assessments (k = 0.81) and between radiologic consensus and semi-automatic assessment (k = 0.80) was found to identify origin of predominant feeding vessel. An excellent reliability for semi-automatic assessment (Cronbach's alpha = 0.96) was reported. Conclusions: Predominant feeding vessel location was correlated with breast lesion location: internal thoracic artery supplied the highest proportion of breasts with tumor in internal half and lateral thoracic artery supplied the highest proportion of breasts with lateral tumor.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0161691
JournalPLoS One
Volume11
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

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