Lobular breast cancer: How useful is breast magnetic resonance imaging?

G. Trecate, J. D T Tess, D. Vergnaghi, S. Bergonzi, G. Mariani, C. Ferraris, R. Musumeci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Rationale and objectives: To review magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings in lobular breast carcinoma, the in situ or infiltrating subtype, with special attention to the dynamic curves with the aim to evaluate possible differences with ductal carcinoma. Methods: In 2 years, 27 patients with lobular and one with tubular carcinoma underwent MRI at the Istituto Nazionale Tumori of Milan. Results: All lobular carcinomas demonstrated early or late enhancement (100% sensitivity), without significant differences in morphology compared with ductal carcinoma, but frequently with a different shape of the dynamic curves. Conclusions: Due to its infiltrative growth associated to only limited connective tissue reaction, lobular carcinoma often encounters difficulties in mammographic diagnosis. In contrast, MRI can be very helpful in evaluating the true extension of the disease, especially when breast conservation is considered. Due to a more consistent fibrotic stroma, these lesions sometimes show a delayed enhancement, which suggests that more than one set of subtracted images should be evaluated during MRI analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-238
Number of pages7
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Breast neoplasm
  • Dynamic curves
  • Dynamic delay
  • Lobular carcinoma
  • Magnetic resonance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research


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