Small breast cancer

Case contributed by Alexandra Stanislavsky
Diagnosis certain


Routine screening. Patient is asymptomatic.

Patient Data

Age: 56
Gender: Female

There is a subtle spiculated mass in the left breast, upper inner quadrant.  It is more easily appreciated on the CC view. A

Mammo zoom


This is a zoomed in image of the left CC contact mammogram shown above - making allowances that we are no longer on the high resolution mammo screens!

Mammo workup


Dedicated workup views confirm that the lesion persists following spot compression.


Spiculated mass was found on ultrasound, measuring only 3mm.

Post biopsy


An ultrasound guided biopsy of the sonographic lesion was performed. Clip inserted at the biopsy site confirms that this corresponds to the spiculated mass seen on mammogram.

Core biopsy pathology result:

Grade 1 invasive ductal carcinoma.

Case Discussion

This is a small, subtle low grade cancer detected at screening mammography as a spiculate mass.

The ability to detect small cancers is crucial in breast cancer screening, as cancer size is an independent risk factor for overall and recurrence-free survival.  

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