Stereotactic excisional breast biopsy performed by interventional radiologists using the advanced breast biopsy instrumentation system

B. Damascelli, L. F. Frigerio, R. Lanocita, G. Patelli, G. Viganotti, G. Di Tolla, S. Magnoni, V. Ticha, E. Galante, A. Attili, R. Saccozzi, G. Tomasich

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The Advanced Breast Biopsy Instrumentation (ABBI) system, which uses surgical cannulas up to 20 mm in diameter, is an alternative to conventional surgical biopsy for the diagnosis of non-palpable breast lesions. Since the need for radiological skill outweighs the surgical content of the technique, we evaluated the feasibility of complete management of the procedure by interventional radiologists. 35 of the 111 patients originally scheduled for the procedure were excluded, three because the lesion could not be visualized and 32 because of insufficient thickness of the compressed breast. The procedure had to be abandoned in one case due to a technical failure. 77 stereotactic excisional breast biopsy procedures were performed using the ABBI system in 75 patients with suspicious non-palpable mammographic lesions. The procedure was carried out under local anaesthesia in the radiology department, using a dedicated Lorad (R) radiographic system. 31 (40%) masses without calcifications, 11 (14%) masses with calcifications and 35 (46%) clusters of microcalcifications without tumour mass were sampled. 43 (56%) benign lesions and 34 (44%) malignant lesions were diagnosed. The overall mean diameter of the lesions was 8.7 mm (range 3-22 mm). All 34 patients with malignancies and lobular carcinoma in situ subsequently underwent surgery, the results of which are reported. Three (4%) haematomas were detected and aspirated percutaneously. Two technical problems occurred: an ABBI cannula malfunction, and a computer failure of the digital imaging system during the procedure. The average procedure time was 80 min and the cost of each procedure was 2,800,000 Italian lire (1555 US$). It is concluded that tissue sampling with the ABBI system can be performed entirely by radiologists without significant problems. The procedure was well tolerated by all patients. The quality of the biopsy specimen was identical to that of a surgical specimen but with the advantages of stereotactic precision for localization of the lesion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1003-1011
Number of pages9
JournalBritish Journal of Radiology
Issue numberOCT.
Publication statusPublished - 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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