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Title: Comparison of mammographic density assessed as volumes and areas among women undergoing diagnostic image-guided breast biopsy.
Authors: Gierach GL,  Geller BM,  Shepherd JA,  Patel DA,  Vacek PM,  Weaver DL,  Chicoine RE,  Pfeiffer RM,  Fan B,  Mahmoudzadeh AP,  Wang J,  Johnson JM,  Herschorn SD,  Brinton LA,  Sherman ME
Journal: Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev
Date: 2014 Nov
Branches: BB, MEB
PubMed ID: 25139935
PMC ID: PMC4337788
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Mammographic density (MD), the area of non-fatty-appearing tissue divided by total breast area, is a strong breast cancer risk factor. Most MD analyses have used visual categorizations or computer-assisted quantification, which ignore breast thickness. We explored MD volume and area, using a volumetric approach previously validated as predictive of breast cancer risk, in relation to risk factors among women undergoing breast biopsy. METHODS: Among 413 primarily white women, ages 40 to 65 years, undergoing diagnostic breast biopsies between 2007 and 2010 at an academic facility in Vermont, MD volume (cm(3)) was quantified in craniocaudal views of the breast contralateral to the biopsy target using a density phantom, whereas MD area (cm(2)) was measured on the same digital mammograms using thresholding software. Risk factor associations with continuous MD measurements were evaluated using linear regression. RESULTS: Percent MD volume and area were correlated (r = 0.81) and strongly and inversely associated with age, body mass index (BMI), and menopause. Both measures were inversely associated with smoking and positively associated with breast biopsy history. Absolute MD measures were correlated (r = 0.46) and inversely related to age and menopause. Whereas absolute dense area was inversely associated with BMI, absolute dense volume was positively associated. CONCLUSIONS: Volume and area MD measures exhibit some overlap in risk factor associations, but divergence as well, particularly for BMI. IMPACT: Findings suggest that volume and area density measures differ in subsets of women; notably, among obese women, absolute density was higher with volumetric methods, suggesting that breast cancer risk assessments may vary for these techniques.