February 1978

An Assessment of Routine Liver Scanning in Patients With Breast Cancer

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Radiology and Surgery, Mt Sinai Hospital of Cleveland and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland.

Arch Surg. 1978;113(2):126-127. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1978.01370140016002

• A retrospective review of the value of routine perioperative liver scanning for patients with breast cancer was performed. The liver was considered to be normal in 231 of 234 patients. The hepatoscan uncovered only one patient with unsuspected metastases. There were eight false-positive studies. Measurements of liver function, SGOT, SGPT, alkaline phosphatase, and bilirubin levels separated true positive from false-positive hepatoscans for all except one patient. Abnormal liver chemistry studies also identified liver metastases in an additional follow-up group of 192 patients. The low yield of detection of hepatic metastases during the initial work-up of breast cancer patients suggests that routine hepatoscanning be abandoned unless there is evidence of abnormal liver function.

(Arch Surg 113:126-127, 1978)