Sepideh Saadatmand et al reported MRI screening to detect cancer at an earlier stage compared to mammography in women with a familial risk of breast cancer. The study involved 1,355 women aged between 30-55years. The participants had a cumulative lifetime breast cancer risk of at least 20% because of a familial predisposition but were BRCA1, BRCA2, and TP53 wild type. Of these, 675 were randomized to receive annual MRI and clinical breast examination plus biennial mammography and 680 were allocated to receive annual mammography and clinical breast examination. Researchers reported the detection of more breast cancers in the MRI group up to 40, than in the mammography group which accounted for 15 cases. The 24 invasive cancers in the MRI-detected group were smaller than the eight found in the mammography group.
The tumour stages in the MRI group were significantly earlier with 12 (48%) of 25 tumours identified as T1a and T1b compared with one (7%) of 15 in the mammography group. One (4%) of 25 in the MRI group and two (13%) of 15 in the mammography group were stage T2 or higher. Researchers, however, warn about the false-positive results that could accompany the advantage of the high sensitivity of MRI screening approach, particularly with high breast density.
Source : The Lancet Oncology 17 June 2019 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S1470-2045(19)30275-X