Modified gamma camera zeroes in on subcentimeter breast lesions

April 1, 2005

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, have developed a molecular breast imaging technique that uses a cadmium-zinc-telluride semiconductor detector.

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, have developed a molecular breast imaging technique that uses a cadmium-zinc-telluride semiconductor detector.

The investigators mounted a gamma camera, which has a field-of-view of 20 x 20 cm and detector elements of 2.5 x 2.5 mm, onto a modified mammographic gantry. Between November 2001 and March 2004, they imaged 40 women who were scheduled for biopsy. The study was published in the January issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Using 20 mCi of technetium-99m sestamibi, they obtained craniocaudal and mediolateral oblique views of both breasts. The imaging technique detected 33 of 36 lesions confirmed to be malignant by surgery, for an overall sensitivity of 92%. It detected 19 of 22 surgery-confirmed lesions smaller than 1 cm, for a sensitivity of 86%.