Comb-push ultrasound shear elastography of breast masses: Initial results show promise

Max Denis, Mohammad Mehrmohammadi, Pengfei Song, Duane D. Meixner, Robert T. Fazzio, Sandhya Pruthi, Dana H. Whaley, Shigao Chen, Mostafa Fatemi, Azra Alizad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose or Objective: To evaluate the performance of Comb-push Ultrasound Shear Elastography (CUSE) for classification of breast masses. Materials and Methods: CUSE is an ultrasound-based quantitative two-dimensional shear wave elasticity imaging technique, which utilizes multiple laterally distributed acoustic radiation force (ARF) beams to simultaneously excite the tissue and induce shear waves. Female patients who were categorized as having suspicious breast masses underwent CUSE evaluations prior to biopsy. An elasticity estimate within the breast mass was obtained from the CUSE shear wave speed map. Elasticity estimates of various types of benign and malignant masses were compared with biopsy results. Results: Fifty-four female patients with suspicious breast masses from our ongoing study are presented. Our cohort included 31 malignant and 23 benign breast masses. Our results indicate that the mean shear wave speed was significantly higher in malignant masses (6 ± 1.58 m/s) in comparison to benign masses (3.65 ± 1.36 m/s). Therefore, the stiffness of the mass quantified by the Young's modulus is significantly higher in malignant masses. According to the receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC), the optimal cut-off value of 83 kPa yields 87.10% sensitivity, 82.61% specificity, and 0.88 for the area under the curve (AUC). Conclusion: CUSE has the potential for clinical utility as a quantitative diagnostic imaging tool adjunct to B-mode ultrasound for differentiation of malignant and benign breast masses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0119398
JournalPloS one
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 16 2015
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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