Is Specimen Tomosynthesis the Most Effective Strategy to Reduce Re-excisions for Breast Cancer?

Is Specimen Tomosynthesis the Most Effective Strategy to Reduce Re-excisions for Breast Cancer?

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A new study from MD Anderson Cancer Center suggests the answer is yes.

In a study published in the Annals of Surgical Oncology in April 2019, Digital Breast Tomosynthesis for Intraoperative Margin Assessment during Breast-Conserving Surgery, Ko Un Park MD and collaborators at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston Texas determined the ability of digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) to detect positive margins compared with an institution’s standard extensive processing (SEP). DBT images of surgical specimens were acquired using the KUBTEC Mozart System.    

You can read the study here    

According to the authors, “This study demonstrates the ability of DBT (the KUBTEC MOZART 3D imaging specimen system) to accurately identify specimens having tumor at ink, with a similar sensitivity and higher specificity than institutional Standard Extensive Processing”    

The authors continue, “DBT (the KUBTEC Mozart System) has a statistically higher specificity, which decreases the amount of additional tissue excised unnecessarily. DBT can replace labor-intensive processing methods given that its rapid acquisition of high resolution, cross-sectioned images of the intact specimen takes approximately 1 min, and can be read by the surgeon.”    

The authors go on to compare the Mozart System with Cavity Margin Shaving, an emerging strategy to reduce re-excision: “Routine shave margins would have theoretically required excising 575 negative margins in order to include the 19 positive margins.”    

The authors conclude that DBT (The KUBTEC Mozart System) is an accurate technology for detecting the location of Segmental Mastectomy positive margins, performing similar to institutional labor-intensive processing. It provides targeted excision of additional tissue in contrast to performing routine shave margins.  

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