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Localization of non-palpable breast cancer using a radiolabelled titanium seed

Y E A van Riet, F H Jansen, M van Beek, C J H van de Velde, H J T Rutten, G A P Nieuwenhuijzen
British Journal of Surgery 2010, 97 (8): 1240-5
20602505

BACKGROUND: Resection guided by a radiologically placed hookwire is the most common surgical technique for non-palpable breast cancer. This technique has several well described disadvantages such as incidental migration, kinking or fracture of the wire, and difficult logistics between the radiology, surgical and nuclear medicine departments. Use of an iodine-125-radiolabelled (I-125) seed for localization of non-palpable breast tumours could potentially prevent these problems.

METHODS: Data on use of the I-125 seed localization technique in 325 consecutive women were collected prospectively between October 2003 and June 2009. All patients with screen-detected, histologically proven malignancy were included. Patients with a preoperative core biopsy showing either ductal carcinoma in situ or unclear pathology were excluded from this study.

RESULTS: The mean(s.d.) age of the women was 59.5(11.9) years. Localization was guided ultrasonographically in 275 procedures, stereotactically in 45 and by both techniques in five. The I-125 seed was removed by surgery after a mean of 4(5) days. The mean duration of operation was 62.9(21.2) min. Complete tumour removal was achieved in 310 procedures (95.4 per cent).

CONCLUSION: Localization of impalpable breast cancer using a I-125 seed was safe and led to a high proportion of radical lumpectomies.

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