J Brown, A Coulthard, AK Dixon, JM Dixon, DF Easton, RA Eeles, DG Evans, FG Gilbert, C Hayes, JP Jenkins, MO Leach, SM Moss, AP Padhani, LJ Pointon, BA Ponder, JP Sloane, LW Turnbull, LG Walker, RM Warren, W Watson, UK MRI Breast Screening Study Advisory Group
The protocol of the national multicentre study of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) as a method of screening for breast cancer in women at genetic risk is described. The sensitivity and specificity of contrast-enhanced MRI will be compared with two-view X-ray mammography in a comparative trial. Approximately 500 women below the age of 50 at high genetic risk of breast cancer will be recruited per year for 3 years, with annual MRI and X-ray examination continuing for up to 5 years. A symptomatic cohort will be measured in the initial phase of the study to ensure consistent reporting between centres. The MRI examination will comprise an initial high-sensitivity screening measurement, followed by a high-specificity measurement in equivocal cases. Retrospective analysis will identify the most specific indicators of malignancy. Sensitivity and specificity, together with diagnostic performance, diagnostic impact and therapeutic impact will be assessed with reference to pathology, follow-up and changes in diagnostic certainty and therapeutic decisions. The psychological impact of screening in this high-risk group will be ascertained.