Article Abstract

A multicenter hospital-based diagnosis study of automated breast ultrasound system in detecting breast cancer among Chinese women

Authors: Xi Zhang, Xi Lin, Yanjuan Tan, Ying Zhu, Hui Wang, Ruimei Feng, Guoxue Tang, Xiang Zhou, Anhua Li, Youlin Qiao


Objective: The automated breast ultrasound system (ABUS) is a potential method for breast cancer detection; however, its diagnostic performance remains unclear. We conducted a hospital-based multicenter diagnostic study to evaluate the clinical performance of the ABUS for breast cancer detection by comparing it to handheld ultrasound (HHUS) and mammography (MG).
Methods: Eligible participants underwent HHUS and ABUS testing; women aged 40–69 years additionally underwent MG. Images were interpreted using the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS). Women in the BI-RADS categories 1–2 were considered negative. Women classified as BI-RADS 3 underwent magnetic resonance imaging to distinguish true- and false-negative results. Core aspiration or surgical biopsy was performed in women classified as BI-RADS 4−5, followed by a pathological diagnosis. Kappa values and agreement rates were calculated between ABUS, HHUS and MG.
Results: A total of 1,973 women were included in the final analysis. Of these, 1,353 (68.6%) and 620 (31.4%) were classified as BI-RADS categories 1−3 and 4−5, respectively. In the older age group, the agreement rate and Kappa value between the ABUS and HHUS were 94.0% and 0.860 (P<0.001), respectively; they were 89.2% and 0.735 (P<0.001) between the ABUS and MG, respectively. Regarding consistency between imaging and pathology results, 78.6% of women classified as BI-RADS 4−5 based on the ABUS were diagnosed with precancerous lesions or cancer; which was 7.2% higher than that of women based on HHUS. For BI-RADS 1−2, the false-negative rates of the ABUS and HHUS were almost identical and were much lower than those of MG.
Conclusions: We observed a good diagnostic reliability for the ABUS. Considering its performance for breast cancer detection in women with high-density breasts and its lower operator dependence, the ABUS is a promising option for breast cancer detection in China.

Keywords: Automated breast ultrasound system; breast neoplasms; China