Ultrasound Imaging Technologies for Breast Cancer Detection and Management: A Review

Ultrasound Med Biol. 2018 Jan;44(1):37-70. doi: 10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2017.09.012. Epub 2017 Oct 26.


Ultrasound imaging is a commonly used modality for breast cancer detection and diagnosis. In this review, we summarize ultrasound imaging technologies and their clinical applications for the management of breast cancer patients. The technologies include ultrasound elastography, contrast-enhanced ultrasound, 3-D ultrasound, automatic breast ultrasound and computer-aided detection of breast ultrasound. We summarize the study results seen in the literature and discuss their future directions. We also provide a review of ultrasound-guided, breast biopsy and the fusion of ultrasound with other imaging modalities, especially magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). For comparison, we also discuss the diagnostic performance of mammography, MRI, positron emission tomography and computed tomography for breast cancer diagnosis at the end of this review. New ultrasound imaging techniques, ultrasound-guided biopsy and the fusion of ultrasound with other modalities provide important tools for the management of breast patients.

Keywords: Automated ultrasound; Breast cancer; Computer-aided detection; Detection and Diagnosis; Image fusion; Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); Positron emission tomography (PET); Three-dimensional (3D) ultrasound; Ultrasound imaging; Ultrasound-guided biopsy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Breast / diagnostic imaging
  • Breast / pathology
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Breast Neoplasms / therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Ultrasonography, Interventional
  • Ultrasonography, Mammary / methods*