Molecular Breast Imaging

Molecular Breast Imaging

This method is also known as Miraluma test, or sestamibi test, or scintimmography or breast specific imaging and is targeted at detecting breast cancer.

In this test as radioactive traces is injected in the body intravenously which marks and lights up the cancerous growth inside the body. It is usually injected in the arm. Cancer cells have an affinity for radioactive substance which is better than normal cells of the body. This idea is used in this test, in which a special camera specifically designed then captures these light up growth images in a scan. This camera is called nuclear medicine scanner, it scans the breast to detect and identify cancer growth areas – highlighted by concentration of radioactive tracer.

This test is in a nascent stage of development but has shown promising results in women with denser breasts and women who are high risk individuals due to genetic nd medical history reasons and such. Women with dense breasts are faced with a situation with mammography images as a mammography is not able to distinguish between healthy and abnormal tissue in dense breasts. Thus a molecular breast imaging comes in helpful in isolating tumors in such cases. The only drawback of the molecular breast imaging is the amount of radiation exposure which is much more as when compared to a mammogram. Recently MBI (moleculr breast imaging) has been compared with MRI but MRI results in breast cancer evaluation have been found to give “false positive results”. It is also an expensive test than MBI. Mammography is still a wider choice of evaluation for breast cancer and for women who do not have breast cancer and also do not fall in the high risk category, it is the optimum choice option.

Also it is the belief of many doctors that, when compared for most women, between MBI and mammography, for detection of breast tumors when they are small and generally easier to treat, mammography is still the best option.

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