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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 862-868

Meta-analysis of diagnostic accuracy of magnetic resonance imaging and mammography for breast cancer


Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China

Date of Web Publication13-Dec-2017

Correspondence Address:
Hong Ren
Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310016
China
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_678_17

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 > Abstract 


Objective: The aim of this study was to compare the performance of mammography (MG) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the diagnosis of breast cancer.
Methods: Searching in the databases including PubMed, Embase, and Google Scholar about comparative study of MG and MRI in the diagnosis of breast cancer during 2000–2017. After we screened further, the extracted effective data were calculated by Meta-Disc 1.4 software.
Results: we obtained 11 articles. The pooled estimates for sensitivity of MG and MRI were 0.75 (95% confidence interval [CI], [0.72, 0.78]) and 0.92 (95% CI, [0.89, 0.94]) respectively, and for specificity were 0.71 (95% CI, [0.67, 0.74]) and 0.70 (95% CI, [0.66, 0.73]), respectively. Their weighted area under the summary receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.79 and 0.93, respectively.
Conclusion: MRI remains to be a satisfactory method for the diagnosis of breast cancer and should first be considered for patients.

Keywords: Breast cancer, mammography, magnetic resonance imaging, meta-analysis


How to cite this article:
Zhang Y, Ren H. Meta-analysis of diagnostic accuracy of magnetic resonance imaging and mammography for breast cancer. J Can Res Ther 2017;13:862-8

How to cite this URL:
Zhang Y, Ren H. Meta-analysis of diagnostic accuracy of magnetic resonance imaging and mammography for breast cancer. J Can Res Ther [serial online] 2017 [cited 2019 Dec 12];13:862-8. Available from: http://www.cancerjournal.net/text.asp?2017/13/5/862/220482




 > Introduction Top


Breast cancer is the most common cancer and the fifth most common cause of death among women in the world.[1] Improving the diagnosis way to detect the progression of breast cancer more early and accurate, this will be contributed to treatment of breast cancer patients.[2] One of the key problems in the diagnosis of breast cancer is how distinguish breast cancer with some benign lesions such as breast fibroma, fibroadenosis, and lobular hyperplasia.[3] The mammography (MG) is a traditional imaging tool in breast disease detection.[4] In recent years, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has also been applied to the differential diagnosis and clinical research of breast cancer, which not only enriches the diagnosis method of breast cancer but also brings a series of question such as rational use of these methods, how to optimize their combination to achieve the best diagnostic results.[5] Therefore, it is necessary to systematical evaluate the diagnostic accuracy and characteristics of the above two examination methods. This will provide valuable guidance for the selection of breast imaging methods and the interpretation of test results.


 > Methods Top


Searching method

We conducted a search of PubMed, Embase, and Google Scholar databases that were published between 2000 and 2017. We limited the search to study published in English. The medical subject heading terms and keywords used included “breast cancer or breast carcinoma or breast neoplasm,” “mammography,” “magnetic resonance image,” “sensitivity,” “specificity,” “accuracy,” and “diagnostic value.” Duplicate articles and unpublished studies from international meetings were excluded.

Inclusion criteria

Studies were selected carefully on the basis of following criteria: The pathology results as “gold standard;” a case–control study (there are 2 × 2 contingency tables); blind evaluation results; direct or indirect access to true positive, false positive, false negative, true negative, sensitivity, specificity.

Excluding standard

Studies were excluded on the basis of following criteria: nonclinical controlled trials; nonbreast cancer research; incomplete data; case reports; review literature; data published repeatedly.

Data extraction

Two authors independently assessed each literature and then download and extracted all the data using standardized data-abstraction forms. The data extracted included year of publication, true positive, false positive, false negative, true negative, sensitivity, and specificity. For each study, 2 × 2 contingency tables were constructed. We calculated the sensitivity, specificity, and likelihood ratio (LR).

Statistical analysis

The sensitivity, specificity, and 95% confidence interval (CI) of the literature were analyzed by Meta-Disc 1.4 software (Clinical BioStatistics Unit-Hospital Ramon y Cajal, Madrid, Spain), and the summary receiver operating characteristic (SROC) curves and forest map were drawn. According to the results of heterogeneity test, the corresponding fixed effect model or the immediate effect model is selected to quantify the effect values.


 > Results Top


Literature searches and characteristics of eligible study

According to search strategy, 11 full articles were finally considered eligible for the review after evaluation. [Figure 1] shows the flow diagram of study selection process. The detailed characteristics for the 11 eligible studies are summarized in [Table 1].
Figure 1: The study selection process

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Table 1: Baseline characteristics of included studies

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Quality assessment

We assessed the quality of included studies according to QUADAS.[17] Each study was evaluated respectively by two independent investigators. On average, the investigators disagreed on three of 11 items (range, 0–6). All disagreements were resolved by consensus.

The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of mammography

The pooled diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of MG are 0.75 (95% CI, [0.72, 0.78]) and 0.71 (95% CI, [0.67, 0.74]), respectively. Significant heterogeneity was found among these studies (I2 = 79.4% and 84.1%). Due to significant heterogeneity of the data, we used a random effects model [Figure 2] and [Figure 3].
Figure 2: The plot for the sensitivity of mammography

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Figure 3: The plot for the specificity of mammography

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The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of magnetic resonance imaging

The pooled diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of MRI are 0.92 (95% CI, [0.89, 0.94]) and 0.70 (95% CI, [0.66, 0.73]), respectively. Significant heterogeneity was found among these studies (I2 = 84.8% and 94.1%). Due to significant heterogeneity of the data, we used a random effects model [Figure 4] and [Figure 5].
Figure 4: The plot for the sensitivity of magnetic resonance imaging

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Figure 5: The plot for the specificity of magnetic resonance imaging

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The negative likelihood ratio, positive likelihood ratio, and summary receiver operating characteristic curve of mammography

The pooled negative LR and positive LR of MG are 0.39 (95% CI, [0.29, 0.52]) and 0.71 (95% CI, [0.67, 0.74]), respectively [Figure 6] and [Figure 7]. We successfully plotted the SROC curve. The area under the SROC curve (AUC) is 0.79 and the Q* is 0.73 [Figure 8].
Figure 6: The plot for the negative likelihood ratio of mammography

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Figure 7: The plot for the positive likelihood ratio of mammography

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Figure 8: The summary receiver operating characteristic curve of mammography

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The negative likelihood ratio, positive likelihood ratio, and summary receiver operating characteristic curve of magnetic resonance imaging

The pooled negative LR and positive LR of MG are 0.13 (95% CI, [0.06, 0.29]) and 3.64 (95% CI, [2.29, 5.77]), respectively [Figure 9] and [Figure 10]. We successfully plotted the SROC curve. The AUC is 0.93 and the Q* is 0.87 [Figure 11].
Figure 9: The plot for the negative likelihood ratio of magnetic resonance imaging

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Figure 10: The plot for the positive likelihood ratio of magnetic resonance imaging

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Figure 11: The summary receiver operating characteristic curve of magnetic resonance imaging

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 > Discussion Top


When the traditional literature review deals with the same problem of multiple studies, it is usually equal to treat each study results so that sample size and quality of each study are ignored. These are the major causes of heterogeneity. Therefore, it is difficult to ensure authenticity and reliability of the results. Meta-analysis is a systematic study of multiple-independent research results of the same research purpose, and it is a research method of quantitative synthesis. We gained multiple-independent research about investigating diagnostic accuracy of MRI and MG for breast cancer by searching databases. Meta-analysis can increase sample content and test effectiveness so that optimize clinical decision based on comprehensive information rather than personal experience. With the development of summary ROC method, the meta-analysis of the diagnostic test tends to improve.[18]

Diagnostic tests usually used sensitivity and specificity as indicators. In the same experiment, the two indicators are inversely proportional each other. One indicator rises and the other indicator will decrease. Therefore, a single indicator is not able to reflect the whole character of the diagnostic test. ROC curve can reflect the characteristics of diagnostic tests. Meta-analysis of several different tests of the same test index can be expressed by an ROC curve according to the weight of their odds ratio. This curve is called the SROC curve.[19] The AUC and Q* can be obtained by calculating the area under SROC curve. Q* is the point on the SROC where sensitivity and specificity are equal. The greater AUC and Q* show better diagnostic authenticity. In the sensitivity and specificity, we found sensitivity of 0.75 and specificity of 0.71 for breast MG. The sensitivity and specificity of breast MRI were 0.92 and 0.70. This showed that the discriminatory power of breast MRI is better than MG.

Diagnostic tests are often difficult to suit the principle of randomized controlled trials. It is almost impossible to randomize the “test” and “control” groups in the course of practice, and because different researchers often use different thresholds when judging the test results, most of the diagnostic results are heterogeneous. In this study, both MG group and MRI group showed heterogeneity, so the random effects model was used.[20] This is also a accepted practice, which appropriately increase the weight of small sample data and reduce the weight of large sample data to deal with the heterogeneity of data, but this will bring a certain risk because the quality of small sample data is usually poor and greater biased, and the quality of large sample data is often better, less biased. The random effects model may affect the authenticity of results. On the basis of this meta-analysis, some diagnostic strategies can be used to guide the clinical: (1) although MG shows lower sensitivity than MRI, the cost of MG is cheaper than MRI. Hence, we believe that MG is still the first choice of breast cancer imaging method in clinical applications. (2) For young women, taking into account, the ionizing radiation on the breast damage and young women with dense breast ratio of the high physiological characteristics can give priority to MRI examination. (3) The LR is a combination factor of sensitivity and specificity that can more fully reflect the accuracy of diagnostic tests.[21] The epidemiological studies suggest that LR+ >10 has a positive value and LR<0.1 has a negative value for breast cancer diagnosis. The LR of two kinds of imaging methods is not very satisfactory. On the whole, any of them to diagnose ability of breast cancer is not enough. We still need to combine with other clinical data to analysis.

Evidence-based diagnosis is the use of “the best” research evidence for the diagnosis and treatment of patients to make the best decision. The evidence applied to clinical practice to solve practical problems. For MG, when the characteristics of certain diseases appear, such as “refined salt calcification” exhibited breast cancer, its sensitivity and specificity than the other methods.[22] For dense breast, although MG has a difficulty to show the lesion, MRI should be considered to provide a soft tissue-rich level anatomical images.[23] Although this study performed extensively to retrieve but failed to obtain unpublished literature, thus it could not rule out potential publication bias. In addition, further subgroup analysis was not carried out because that was limited by the initial information of included studies. The quality of original literature might also affect the meta-analysis results. At present, the diagnosis of breast lesions uses a variety of integrated imaging methods to improve the diagnostic accuracy. Their diagnostic value is not the same. Thorough further subgroup analysis may provide information that is instructive for diagnosis and identification.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
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    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4], [Figure 5], [Figure 6], [Figure 7], [Figure 8], [Figure 9], [Figure 10], [Figure 11]
 
 
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