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Volume 6 Supplement 1

Symposium Mammographicum 2004

Audit of stereotactic core biopsies for microcalcification


Microcalcifications are seen in benign and malignant lesions. Stereotactic biopsy along with digital equipment has made targeting these more accurate. This is a retrospective audit of 147 core biopsies done at the Colchester–Chelmsford screening unit.


All patients who had core biopsies for assessment of microcalcifications are included in this study and were discussed in the multidisciplinary team meeting.


Seventy patients had benign microcalcifications seen both on X-ray and pathology. Fifty-two patients had malignant calcifications associated with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).

Of the remaining 25 patients, five had a repeat core, which showed benign calcification, and three were discussed at the multidisciplinary team meeting (calcification seen on X-ray and not on pathology) and discharged to recall in 1 year's time. Table 1 shows the results of the other 17 patients.

Table 1


This audit shows that 11.9% of patients had a diagnostic operation, as the core biopsy could not give a definitive diagnosis. The question whether this can be improved by repeat core or mammotome cores remains to be answered.

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Chandrasekharan, S., Whitney, R., Scott, M. et al. Audit of stereotactic core biopsies for microcalcification. Breast Cancer Res 6 (Suppl 1), P65 (2004).

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  • Carcinoma
  • Cancer Research
  • Definitive Diagnosis
  • Malignant Lesion
  • Core Biopsy