Malignant microcalcifications (breast)

  • Associated with invasive breast cancer and DCIS
  • Clustered, pleomorphic, in a ductal or linear distribution
  • High grade DCIS – rod-shaped and branched. Also called casting or comedo microcalcifications – necrotic debris within ducts
  • Mammogram
    • Most sensitive and recommended for picking calcifications
  • Ultrasound
    • Poor detection of microcalcifications and is not recommended for screening
    • Aids percutaneous biopsy
  • Differentials: skin calcifications (round, well defined, lucent centre, often bilateral and symmetrical), talcum powder
Read more

Lai, Yi-Chen, et al. “Microcalcifications detected at screening mammography: synthetic mammography and digital breast tomosynthesis versus digital mammography.” Radiology 289.3 (2018): 630-638.

Nakayama, Ryohei, et al. “Potential usefulness of similar images in the differential diagnosis of clustered microcalcifications on mammograms.” Radiology 253.3 (2009): 625-631.