Background: Axillary lymph node (ALN) status is an important prognostic factor for breast cancer. We retrospectively used contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CE-CT) to evaluate the presence of ALN, metastasis based on size, shape, and contrasting effects.Methods: Of 131 consecutive patients who underwent CE-CT followed by surgery for breast cancer between 2005 and 2012 in our institution, 49 were histologically diagnosed with lymph node metastasis. Maximum Hounsfield units (HU) and mean HU were measured in non-contrasting CT (NC-CT) and CE-CT of ALNs.Results: Of 12 examined measurements, we found significant differences between negative and metastatic ALNs in mean and maximum NC-CT HU, and mean and maximum CE-CT HU (P < 0.05). We used a receiver operating curve, to determine cut-off values of four items in which significant differences were observed. The highest accuracy rate was noted for the cut-off value of 54 as maximum NC-CT HU for which sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy rate were 79.6%, 80.5% and 80.2%, respectively.Conclusions: CT HU of a patient with breast cancer are absolute values that offer objective disease management data that are not influenced by the screener's ability.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cancer Research