News | November 19, 2013

Age Affects Short-Term Quality of Life After Breast Biopsy

clinical trial study breast biopsy system women's health mammography systems
November 19, 2013 — Breast biopsies can adversely affect short-term quality of life, and the effects are more pronounced in younger patients, according to a new study published online in the journal Radiology.
 
More than 500,000 women in the United States have a breast biopsy each year. In the percutaneous method, a physician uses a needle to remove several small samples from the area of interest for pathological analysis. Percutaneous biopsies are associated with fewer complications than the surgical approach, but there are still significant short-term side effects, including pain and emotional distress.
 
“Short-term experiences can have a long-term impact,” said Janie Lee, M.D., M.Sc., associate professor of radiology, University of Washington School of Medicine and director, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA). “If people have a less-than-positive experience during biopsy, then they might be less likely to come back for screening the next time they are due.”
 
To learn more about the impact of percutaneous biopsy, researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) surveyed women two to four days after the procedure. They used a tool called the Testing Morbidities Index (TMI), a survey that assesses short-term quality of life based on seven attributes, including pain/discomfort and fear/anxiety before and during the procedure and physical and mental function afterwards.
 
The patients rated each characteristic on a scale of one to five, and the final score was adjusted to a scale ranging from 0 for the worst possible experience to 100 for no adverse quality of life effects.
 
The 188 women, ranging in age from 22 to 80 years, had a mean TMI score of 82 out of 100. Patient age was the only significant independent predictor of the TMI score, which decreased by approximately three points for every decade decrease in age. The mean TMI score for women less than 40 years old was 76.4.
 
“The most important result from this study is that women have short-term decreases in quality of life related to breast biopsy,” said Lee. “When we looked at the predictors of quality of life score, we found that the strongest predictor is younger age.”
 
Lee noted that the results are surprising at first glance, considering that younger women as a group generally are healthier than their older counterparts. She pointed to the significant role of anxiety as a major factor in explaining the differences.
 
“The prospect of life-threatening disease can produce a lot of anxiety in anyone,” Lee said. “Younger women typically have less experience with the health care system in general, and it may be their first time going through a diagnostic testing experience.”
 
The study findings suggest that tailored pre-biopsy counseling may better prepare women for percutaneous biopsy procedures.
 
“By better explaining what patients can expect during the biopsy experience, we can minimize anxiety before and after the procedure,” Lee said.
 
Researchers at MGH, led by Shannon Swan, M.D., are using the TMI tool to study other screening experiences like colonoscopy to learn ways to improve the diagnostic testing process for patients. 
 
For more information: radiology.rsna.org, www.rsna.org

Related Content

In a demonstration on the exhibit floor of the SBI symposium, Koios software identified suspicious lesions in ultrasound images

In a demonstration on the exhibit floor of the SBI symposium, Koios software identified suspicious lesions in ultrasound images. Photo by Greg Freiherr

Feature | Artificial Intelligence | April 19, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr
Commercial efforts to develop...
Videos | Breast Imaging | April 18, 2019
In a keynote lecture at the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI)/American College of Radiology (ACR) 2019 Symposium, ...
Surgically Guided Brachytherapy Improves Outcomes for Intracranial Neoplasms
News | Brachytherapy Systems | April 18, 2019
Peter Nakaji, M.D., FAANS, general practice neurosurgeon at Barrow Neurological Institute, presented new research on...
Fatty tissue and breast density may be considered in the context of many factors that affect the occurrence and detection of breast cancer

Fatty tissue and breast density may be considered in the context of many factors that affect the occurrence and detection of breast cancer. Permission to publish provided by DenseBreast-info.org

Feature | Breast Imaging | April 18, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr
When planning a screening program to detect the early signs of breast cancer, age is a major consideration.
iCAD Appoints Stacey Stevens as President
News | Radiology Business | April 16, 2019
iCAD Inc. recently announced that Stacey Stevens has been named president. As president, Stevens will have expanded...
compressed breast during mammography.
360 Photos | 360 View Photos | April 16, 2019
A 360 view of a simulated breast compression for a...
Check-Cap Initiates U.S. Pilot Study of C-Scan for Colorectal Cancer Screening
News | Colonoscopy Systems | April 15, 2019
Check-Cap Ltd. has initiated its U.S. pilot study of the C-Scan system for prevention of colorectal cancer through...
A smart algorithm has been trained on a neural network to recognize the appearance of breast cancer in MR images

A smart algorithm has been trained on a neural network to recognize the appearance of breast cancer in MR images. The algorithm, described at the SBI/ACR Breast Imaging Symposium, used “Deep Learning,“ a form of machine learning, which is a type of artificial intelligence. Graphic courtesy of Sarah Eskreis-Winkler, M.D.

Feature | Artificial Intelligence | April 12, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr
The use of smart algorithms has the potential to make healthcare more efficient.