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Study Validates Clinical Accuracy of 50% Dose Reduction for Positron Emission Mammography

SAN ANTONIO, June 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Presented today at the Society of Nuclear Medicine 2011 Annual Meeting researchers from Swedish Medical Center and the University of Washington showed that FDG dose for Positron Emission Mammography (PEM) may be reduced by at least 50% without altering image quality.

PEM is the breast application of the Naviscan high-resolution PET scanner showing the location as well as the metabolic phase of a lesion.  The metabolic view assists physicians in making the optimal cancer care decision by providing an unprecedented ability to distinguish between benign and malignant lesions, what researchers term "specificity."  PEM is different than x-ray mammography in that it is currently not used as a screening modality, rather is deployed to confirm extent of disease and aid in treatment planning in a patient already diagnosed with a primary breast cancer.

"With our limited clinical experience with invasive ductal carcinomas to date the clinical diagnostic quality of images appear equivalent between the 5 millicurie (mCi) dose and the traditional 10 millicurie dose. However the longer uptake time (90-120 minutes) we believe significantly improves lesion to background ratio with our invasive ductal carcinomas," stated Dr. James Rogers, a nuclear medicine physician at Seattle Nuclear Medicine and co-author of the study. "The tradeoff between lowering dose and minimally increasing imaging scan time from a 7 to 10 minute scan appears to be a reasonable imaging strategy. We are still formulating our opinion and strategy in regard to lower FDG doses that are less than 5 millicuries, and are hopeful that an individualized patient strategy based on patient weight will allow us to show that lower FDG doses will be possible for a large number of our patients.  We have not done enough DCIS only patients or Invasive Lobular patients to make a conclusion at this time."

The researchers presented results of a study to detect lesions with very low doses of radiation using the Naviscan high-resolution PET scanner.  Preliminary results from five patients with invasive ductal carcinoma as well as phantom images show that PEM lesion detection at a 5 mCi injected dose of FDG, or 50% lower than the dose commonly used in clinical practice, yielded comparable sensitivity while maintaining lesion detectability.  Preliminary results also revealed that injected dose could be reduced further for lighter patients or with concordant increased scan time. These results are part of an ongoing clinical trial at Swedish Medical Center with the goal of determining the lowest optimized dose levels of FDG required to produce high quality PEM images in patients with breast cancer.

About Naviscan, Inc.

Naviscan, founded in 1995, develops and markets compact, high-resolution PET scanners intended to provide organ-specific molecular imaging and guide radiological and surgical procedures. The Naviscan PET scanner is currently installed and available in breast and imaging centers throughout the U.S. and other parts of the world. The Company is headquartered in San Diego, California and is the first to obtain FDA-clearance for a high-resolution PET scanner designed to image small body parts and for breast biopsy image guidance. For more information, call 1.858.587.3641 or visit

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SOURCE Naviscan, Inc.
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