Dr. Montes on the Relationship of MRI Imaging Characteristics With Race

Jennifer Montes, MD

Jennifer Montes, MD, NYU Langone Medical Center, discusses a recent study that examined the relationship of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) characteristics with race in breast cancer.

Patients with early-stage breast cancer in this study, Montes explains, were racially diverse, college-educated, had access to healthcare, and had a mammogram within the last year. A total of 2092 women, with a median age of 59, were examined. Most patients had invasive ductal carcinoma in situ that was ER-positive or HER2-negative, she adds.

Data showed that African-Americans had lower breast density, lower background parenchymal enhancement, and lower fibroglandular tissue compared with Caucasians. However, African-Americans had a higher body mass index (BMI). Asian-Americans had opposite results and a lower BMI, Montes says.

Notable differences were found among races with respect to tumor biology. African-Americans had higher rates of triple-negative breast cancer, though this did not translate into higher breast density on MRI.

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