A new computerized assessment has been developed that can help physicians objectively assess a patient's breast density and monitor it over time to detect any alarming changes that may suggest cancer, according to a study evaluating this technology that was performed at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD.

A second look ultrasound of the breast, used in conjunction with MRI, allows radiologists to identify lesions not detected on conventional mammography and first look ultrasound; in some cases it allows radiologists to determine whether or not a lesion is malignant or benign, according to a study performed at the University of Rome La Sapienza in Rome, Italy.

Bioengineers at UC San Diego have developed a breakthrough method for sequencing-based methylation profiling, which could help fuel personalized regenerative medicine and even lead to more efficient and cost-effective methods for studying certain diseases.

To do this, the researchers, led by Kun Zhang, a bioengineering professor in the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, developed an accurate assays for quantifying DNA methylation digitally on an arbitrary set of nonrepetitive genomic targets using padlock probes.

A new MR imaging sequence, T2-weighted BLADE, used to image the female pelvis improves image quality and helps radiologists make a more accurate diagnosis, according to a study performed at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD.

Ultrasound can be used to make an appropriate decision regarding care for patients with rheumatic conditions involving the hands and feet, according to a study performed at St. Joseph's Healthcare/McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada.

The study included 62 patients. Results showed that, "approximately 50% of patients had a change in management following ultrasound evaluation," said Srinivasan Harish, lead author of the study. "Certainty in clinical findings significantly increased following ultrasound, ranging from 24% to 56% for various findings," he said.

Educating physicians about ventilation-perfusion scanning (VQ) as an alternative to CT for the diagnosis of pulmonary embolisms led to a 23% decrease in patient exposure, according to a study performed at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, NY. "VQ scanning is a nuclear test which shows blood flow to the lung and airflow. When there is a pulmonary embolism, the air can enter normally, but the blood flow will be disrupted, resulting in an abnormal scan," said Linda Haramati, MD, lead author of the study.

Breast elastography allows physicians to give a more accurate diagnosis of breast cancer, according to a study performed at Singapore General Hospital in Singapore. Breast elastography is a new technique which looks at the mechanical properties of tissues (relative stiffness) as opposed to conventional ultrasound which looks at the backscatter of transmitted ultrasound waves through tissues.

MRI has identified five possible causes of patient complications from anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstructive surgery, according to a study performed at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, GA, and Sahlgrenska-Molndal University Hospital in Gothenborg, Sweden.

Diffusion weighted MR can accurately identify benign from malignant pelvic lymph nodes in patients with gynecologic malignancy, according to a study performed at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA. Diffusion weighted imaging is a noninvasive test that uses an MRI sequence sensitized to the motion of water molecules within tissue.

Manipulation of kVp (kilovoltage peak) and mAs (tube current flow) according to a patient's body shape may help reduce radiation doses in pediatric patients during CT, according to a study performed at the Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital in Cleveland, OH.