In a study to ascertain whether breast arterial calcification (BAC) detected with digital mammography correlates to chest CT findings of coronary artery calcification (CAC), researchers have discovered a striking relationship between the two factors. In 76% of the study cohort, women who had a BAC score of 0 also had a CAC score of 0. As the BAC score increases, there is a concomitant increase in the CAC score.
The findings indicate that the presence of BAC could play a significant role in identifying women who may benefit from coronary artery disease prevention without additional cost, time, and radiation exposure.
"The opportunity to diagnose cardiovascular risk on mammography heralds a paradigm shift in imaging," said corresponding author Laurie Margolies, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. "Providing this knowledge to patients and ordering physicians increases the opportunity for patients to take advantage of cardiovascular risk-reduction strategies while screening for breast cancer."
The study was presented at the ARRS 2015 Annual Meeting in Toronto.
Materials provided by American Roentgen Ray Society. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.
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