Breast biopsy avoidance: The value of normal mammograms and normal sonograms in the setting of a palpable lump

M. A. Dennis, S. H. Parker, A. J. Klaus, A. T. Stavros, T. I. Kaske, S. B. Clark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

98 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: To review the authors' experience with patients who presented with breast lumps and had normal mammograms and normal sonograms. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The findings from 600 lumps in 486 women with no focal ultrasonographic (US) mass or mammographic finding in the area of clinical concern were retrospectively studied. Evaluated parameters included the individual reporting the lump, qualitative descriptors for the physical finding, mammographic density, US characteristics in the area of concern, whether there was a change in imaging and/or physical examination results, and whether there were diagnostic biopsy findings at follow-up. The study group included 540 lumps in 435 women who had a minimum mammographic and clinical follow-up of 2 years, as well as 60 additional lumps in 51 patients who underwent biopsy. RESULTS: No patient in the nonbiopsy group developed carcinoma at the initial site of concern during a mean mammographic and clinical follow-up period of 43 months, and all biopsy specimens were benign (negative predictive value, 100%). CONCLUSION: Results of this retrospective study suggest that breast biopsy may be avoided in women with palpable abnormalities when both US and mammography depict normal tissue at the lump site.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)186-191
Number of pages6
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast
  • Breast radiography, comparative studies
  • Breast, US

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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