Microcalcifications in clinically normal breast: the value of high field, surface coil, Gd-DTPA-enhanced MRI

J. D. Tesoro-Tess, A. Amoruso, D. Rovini, L. Balzarini, E. Ceglia, E. Civelli, G. Trecate, T. Savio, R. Musumeci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


State-of-the-art screening mammography allows the detection of nonpalpable breast lesions in approximately 30 % of patients. The presence of clustered microcalcifications without evidence of solid tumors usually requires further investigations, mainly biopsy. A 1.5-T magnet with a single breast coil was used to evaluate 32 patients with indeterminate mammography suggestive of microcalcifications prior to surgery. Both spin-echo (SE) and gradient-echo (GE; 2D fast low-angle short [FLASH]) techniques were utilized before and after injection of 0.2 mmol/kg Gd-DTPA. Upon surgery tumor diameters ranged between 3 and 10 mm. Use of MRI demonstrated 87.5 % overall accuracy, 83.3 % sensitivity, and 92.9 % specificity. False-negative MRI results were in situ carcinomas less than 5 mm in size. All the correctly diagnosed carcinomas measured between 5 and 10 mm. Partial volume is probably the greatest limit of this technique and lesions equal to or smaller than 5 mm are only rarely detected. The GE and SE sequences demonstrated comparable results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-422
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Radiology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1995


  • Breast neoplasms, diagnosis
  • Breast neoplasms, MR studies
  • MRI, Gd-DTPA
  • MRI, technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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