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Acta Radiol. 2001 Mar;42(2):198-206.

Early response of breast cancer bone metastases to chemotherapy evaluated with MR imaging.

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  • 1Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Uppsala University Hospital, Uppsala, Sweden.



To compare T1-weighted spin-echo and fat-suppressed long echo time inversion recovery turbo spin-echo (long TE IR-TSE) MR images in the evaluation of early response of breast cancer bone metastases to chemotherapy.


Eighteen breast cancer patients with known bone metastases were investigated prospectively by MR, using T1-weighted and long TE IR-TSE sequences on the sternum, spine, pelvis and proximal femora, before and after a median of 6 courses of chemotherapy. Therapeutic response evaluation with MR was based on change in tumor size assessed quantitatively by measuring all focal metastases, and change in pattern and signal intensity (SI) of the metastases, assessed visually. Combined response evaluation based on clinical findings, conventional radiography, and scintigraphy was used as reference.


Progressive disease (2 patients) and no change (4 patients) were assessed equally well on both MR sequences. Long TE IR-TSE demonstrated partial response with higher accuracy than T1-weighted images, 58% (7/12 patients) vs. 17% (2/12 patients). In patients without progression there was an SI increase in or around the metastases in 6 patients on T1-weighted images and in 7 patients on long TE IR-TSE images.


The long TE IR-TSE sequence demonstrated early partial response of breast cancer bone metastases to chemotherapy more accurately than the T1-weighted sequence.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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