This chapter reviews the state of molecular imaging in breast cancer, specifically the various indications for PET and the supportive evidence behind such clinical use, with a brief discussion into the molecular genetics of breast tumors and its relation to molecular imaging.
Medical imaging plays an integral role in the management of breast
cancers, allowing for noninvasive staging, prognostication, and response evaluations of patients. Advanced cross-sectional imaging modalities such as computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are routinely used in the assessment of such patients.
Molecular imaging techniques such as positron emission tomography (PET) have only been used more recently than CT and MRI but are quickly gaining acceptance in clinical practice. The basis of molecular imaging lies with the detection of specific cell processes or targets, allowing for a precise and more specific identification of target tissue.
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