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A comparison of tumour size measurements with palpation, ultrasound and mammography in male breast cancer: first results of the prospective register study

Abstract

Purpose

Precise presurgical diagnosis of tumour size is essential for adequate treatment of male breast cancer (MBC). This study is aimed to compare the accuracy of clinical measurement (CE), ultrasound (US) and mammography (MG) for preoperative estimation of tumour size.

Methods

This study was conducted as a prospective, multicentre register study. One hundred and twenty-nine male patients with invasive breast cancer were included. CE, US and MG were performed in 107, 110 and 75 patients, respectively, and the estimated tumour size was compared with the histopathological (HP) tumour size.

Results

All methods tended to underestimate the HP tumour size. None of the methods were significantly more accurate than the others in determining the maximal tumour diameter. The sensitivity within 5 mm tolerance for US was 65.5%, which was better than for MG (61.3%) and CE (56.6%). In the group of patients with pT2 tumours, MG showed significantly better accuracy than US. The measurements obtained with each method were significantly correlated with the HP measurements. The highest correlation coefficient was observed for MG (0.788), followed by US (0.741) and CE (0.671).

Conclusions

Our data demonstrate that MG and US have similar accuracy with regard to tumour size estimation. US assessment showed the highest sensitivity in determining tumour size, followed by MG and CE. However, MG demonstrated a significant advantage for estimating the real tumour size for pT2 tumours compared to US or CE.



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