If a woman complains of breast pain, finds a lump or has nipple discharge, it is important to check whether there is a breast condition. In most cases, the condition is benign. The prognosis is therefore not life-threatening. On the other hand, it can sometimes be malignant and therefore cancerous. That’s why it’s important to have regular check-ups. How is breast disease diagnosed? Can breast cancer be detected by ultrasound alone? What are the benefits of this test? PRS Healthcare now answers these questions.
How many cases of breast cancer will there be in 2023?
According to the French National Cancer Institute, there will be 61,214 new cases of breast cancer in France this year. In 2019, there were 59,000 cases. Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women. However, thanks to early detection and appropriate treatment, the mortality rate has fallen in recent years.
How is breast disease classically diagnosed?
Diagnosing breast disease usually involves two tests. The first is called digital tomosynthesis. This produces an overall image of both breasts. The healthcare professional will then perform a targeted breast ultrasound. This is much more precise and focuses on a more specific area of the breast.
Can ultrasound alone detect breast cancer?
To fill the gap in medical imaging, researchers wanted to show that ultrasound alone could be enough to diagnose breast disease. To do this, they conducted a study of women over the age of 30 who had symptoms of breast cancer. Radiologists first analysed the ultrasound scans. None of them had access to tomosynthesis.
Ultrasound gave an accurate diagnosis in 90% of patients. What’s more, 80% of the lesions were found to be benign. Overall, this study attempts to prove that ultrasound provides a reliable and accurate diagnosis. Tomosynthesis is therefore not necessarily necessary to detect breast cancer or other breast diseases.
Why ultrasound works
Ultrasound is more accessible. This is not necessarily the case with tomosynthesis. In fact, most regions with limited resources do not have it. What’s more, it’s a painless examination, unlike tomosynthesis, which some patients may find painful.
However, ultrasound probes need to be checked regularly. That’s why we offer a fleet audit service. It’s important that the probes are not faulty. This will ensure that you get a good diagnosis! So don’t be afraid to get in touch with us.