Tc-99m-sestamibi scintimammography for the diagnosis of breast malignancies

Itzhak Pappo*, Tifha Horne, Ruben Orda

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Breast cancer is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the Western world. The most efficient method for improving the outcome of this disease is early detection. We evaluated the efficacy of Tc-99-sestamibi (MIBI) scintimammography as a method for detection of breast cancer in 212 patients. One hundred forty-nine of these patients had pathological confirmation of the results: 47 cytological and 102 histologic examinations. Sixty-three additional patients were scanned because they belonged to high- risk groups. The results demonstrated that among the 149 patients who had histologic or cytological examinations, positive scans were obtained in 68 patients: 47 of them had breast malignancies and 21 were false positive. Negative scans were obtained in 81 patients: 76 were true negative and in 5 there was a false-negative result. In 63 additional patients in whom no histologic confirmation was obtained, there was a negative scan. In 11 months of follow-up, no malignancy was discovered in this group of patients. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values were 90.4%, 78.4%, 69.1%, and 93.8%, respectively. Four out of five false-negative results were obtained in patients with nonpalpable lesions smaller than 1 cm in size. Total accuracy was 82.6%. In 182 of the 212 patients examined by scintimammography, mammography was available. MIBI scan was superior to mammography in its sensitivity, 90% versus 80%. Total accuracy of both examinations was similar. MIBI scan is a sensitive method for early detection of breast cancer and should be considered as a complimentary tool to the combination of physical examination and mammography.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-446
Number of pages6
JournalBreast Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Breast imaging
  • Malignant neoplasm
  • Scintimammography


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