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Role of mammographic templates in managing ever increasing workloads


A breast imaging report is a key component of the breast cancer diagnostic process. The report must be clear and concise to avoid ambiguity and confusion. However, substantial variation in the information provided in a breast imaging report is not uncommon to see. We sought to develop a report template containing a summary of all essential information pertinent to the surgeons and the radiologists.


Breast surgeons and radiologists were consulted as to what was required in a report and they stated breast density, correlation with clinical findings, lesion characteristics, R1−R5 category, site and size of lesion, and is clinical area of concern biopsied. A retrospective audit of 30 breast imaging reports of recently diagnosed carcinomas between October 2014 and January 2015 were reviewed to see if these were recorded.


Ten per cent of reports did not mention breast density. The most frequent information provided is lesion size (ultrasound 100 %, mammography 73 %). Correlation with referral was unclear in 10 %, R1−R5 category not given in 3 %. Site of lesion was not provided in 3 %. Seven per cent of the reports were 3−4 pages long, described as confusing and difficult to read by the two data extractors. Thirty per cent of reports were not separated into mammography/ultrasound/biopsy sections. There were 23 different ways of characterising lesions on mammography and 24 on ultrasound.


The audit highlighted the need for a breast reporting template that met the needs of the clinicians to ensure the relevant facts were included to further improve the patient pathway.

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Moody, A.N., Fletcher, M. & Sharma, N. Role of mammographic templates in managing ever increasing workloads. Breast Cancer Res 17 (Suppl 1), P34 (2015).

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