Cumulative Probability of False-Positive Results after 10 Years of Screening with Digital Breast Tomosynthesis vs Digital Mammography

Thao Quyen H. Ho, Michael C.S. Bissell, Karla Kerlikowske, Rebecca A. Hubbard, Brian L. Sprague, Christoph I. Lee, Jeffrey A. Tice, Anna N.A. Tosteson, Diana L. Miglioretti

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Abstract

Importance: Breast cancer screening with digital breast tomosynthesis may decrease false-positive results compared with digital mammography. Objective: To estimate the probability of receiving at least 1 false-positive result after 10 years of screening with digital breast tomosynthesis vs digital mammography in the US. Design, Setting, and Participants: An observational comparative effectiveness study with data collected prospectively for screening examinations was performed between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2018, at 126 radiology facilities in the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium. Analysis included 903495 individuals aged 40 to 79 years. Data analysis was conducted from February 9 to September 7, 2021. Exposures: Screening modality, screening interval, age, and Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System breast density. Main Outcomes and Measures: Cumulative risk of at least 1 false-positive recall for further imaging, short-interval follow-up recommendation, and biopsy recommendation after 10 years of annual or biennial screening with digital breast tomosynthesis vs digital mammography, accounting for competing risks of breast cancer diagnosis and death. Results: In this study of 903495 women, 2969055 nonbaseline screening examinations were performed with interpretation by 699 radiologists. Mean (SD) age of the women at the time of the screening examinations was 57.6 (9.9) years, and 58% of the examinations were in individuals younger than 60 years and 46% were performed in women with dense breasts. A total of 15% of examinations used tomosynthesis. For annual screening, the 10-year cumulative probability of at least 1 false-positive result was significantly lower with tomosynthesis vs digital mammography for all outcomes: 49.6% vs 56.3% (difference, -6.7; 95% CI, -7.4 to -6.1) for recall, 16.6% vs 17.8% (difference, -1.1; 95% CI, -1.7 to -0.6) for short-interval follow-up recommendation, and 11.2% vs 11.7% (difference, -0.5; 95% CI, -1.0 to -0.1) for biopsy recommendation. For biennial screening, the cumulative probability of a false-positive recall was significantly lower for tomosynthesis vs digital mammography (35.7% vs 38.1%; difference, -2.4; 95% CI, -3.4 to -1.5), but cumulative probabilities did not differ significantly by modality for short-interval follow-up recommendation (10.3% vs 10.5%; difference, -0.1; 95% CI, -0.7 to 0.5) or biopsy recommendation (6.6% vs 6.7%; difference, -0.1; 95% CI, -0.5 to 0.4). Decreases in cumulative probabilities of false-positive results with tomosynthesis vs digital mammography were largest for annual screening in women with nondense breasts (differences for recall, -6.5 to -12.8; short-interval follow-up, 0.1 to -5.2; and biopsy recommendation, -0.5 to -3.1). Regardless of modality, cumulative probabilities of false-positive results were substantially lower for biennial vs annual screening (overall recall, 35.7 to 38.1 vs 49.6 to 56.3; short-interval follow-up, 10.3 to 10.5 vs 16.6 to 17.8; and biopsy recommendation, 6.6 to 6.7 vs 11.2 to 11.7); older vs younger age groups (eg, among annual screening in women ages 70-79 vs 40-49, recall, 39.8 to 47.0 vs 60.8 to 68.0; short-interval follow-up, 13.3 to 14.2 vs 20.7 to 20.9; and biopsy recommendation, 9.1 to 9.3 vs 13.2 to 13.4); and women with entirely fatty vs extremely dense breasts (eg, among annual screening in women aged 50-59 years, recall, 29.1 to 36.3 vs 58.8 to 60.4; short-interval follow-up, 8.9 to 11.6 vs 19.5 to 19.8; and biopsy recommendation, 4.9 to 8.0 vs 15.1 to 15.3). Conclusions and Relevance: In this comparative effectiveness study, 10-year cumulative probabilities of false-positive results were lower on digital breast tomosynthesis vs digital mammography. Biennial screening interval, older age, and nondense breasts were associated with larger reductions in false-positive probabilities than screening modality..

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E222440
JournalJAMA Network Open
Volume5
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 25 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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