The use of a vacuum-assisted biopsy device (Mammotome) in the early detection of breast cancer in the United Arab Emirates

Issam Faour, Suhail Al-Salam, Hassan El-Terifi, Hakam El Taji

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

12 Citations (Scopus)


Stereotactic core needle biopsy has proven to be an accurate technique for evaluation of mammographically detected microcalcification. The development of the Mammotome biopsy system has led many medical centers to use this vacuum-assisted device for the sampling of microcalcifications in mammographically detected nonpalpable breast lesions. Ninety-six women underwent 101 stereotactic Mammotome core biopsies for mammographic calcifications over a 32-month period in the Department of Surgery at Tawam Hospital, the national referral oncology center in the UAE. The stereotactic procedure was performed by surgeons using the Mammotome biopsy system. Microcalcifications were evident on specimen radiographs and microscopic sections in 96% and 87% of the cases, respectively. Excisional biopsy was recommended for diagnoses of atypical ductal hyperplasia or carcinoma. Patients with benign diagnoses underwent mammographic follow-up. Eighty-one lesions were benign, 5 atypical ductal hyperplasias and 14 carcinomas were diagnosed (2 invasive lobular carcinoma, 4 invasive ductal carcinoma, and 8 intraductal carcinomas in situ: 1 comedo, 1 cribriform, 6 mixed cribriform and micropapillary). Surgical excision in four patients with atypia on Mammotome biopsy (one was lost to follow-up) showed atypical ductal hyperplasia. Surgical excision in seven patients diagnosed with intraductal carcinoma in situ (one patient lost to follow-up) showed intraductal carcinoma with no evidence of microinvasion. Similar diagnoses were made in all the invasive ductal and lobular carcinomas in both Mammotome and excisional biopsies. A diagnosis of atypia on Mammotome biopsy warranted excision of the atypical area, yet the underestimation rate for the presence of carcinoma remained low. The likelihood of an invasive component at excision was negligible for microcalcification diagnosed as intraductal carcinoma in situ on Mammotome biopsy. Mammotome biopsy proved to be an accurate technique for the sampling, diagnosis, and early detection of breast cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRecent Advances in Clinical Oncology
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Inc.
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9781573317009
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2008

Publication series

NameAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
ISSN (Print)0077-8923
ISSN (Electronic)1749-6632


  • Breast
  • Carcinoma
  • Mammotome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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