The importance of breast elastography added to the BI-RADS® (5th edition) lexicon classification

Rev Assoc Med Bras (1992). 2015 Aug;61(4):313-6. doi: 10.1590/1806-9282.61.04.313.


Objective: the aim of this study was to investigate the addition of elastography to the BI-RADS® lexicon for the classification of breast lesions.

Methods: a total of 955 consecutive patients who were subjected to breast percutaneous biopsy from January 2010 to December 2012 were retrospectively assessed. Overall, 26 patients who did not present with masses on conventional ultrasound were excluded. The patients were classified according to the fifth edition of the breast imaging and reporting data system (BI-RADS®) lexicon, which includes elastographic findings. The BI-RADS®classification is based on the same classification principles that have been suggested by the author, which classify lesions as soft, intermediate, or hard.

Results: the addition of elastographic findings to the BI-RADS® lexicon improved the sensitivity (S), specificity (SP), and diagnostic accuracy (DA) of ultrasound in the assessment of breast lesions, which increased from 93.85, 72.07, and 76.64 to 95.90, 80.65, and 91.39%, respectively.

Conclusion: these findings suggest that the addition of elastography to the BIRADS ® lexicon will improve the SP and DA of ultrasound in the screening of breast lesions.

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy, Needle / methods
  • Breast / pathology
  • Breast Diseases / classification
  • Breast Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Breast Diseases / pathology
  • Data Accuracy
  • Elasticity Imaging Techniques / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Ultrasonography, Mammary / methods*