Influence of size and depth on accuracy of electrical impedance scanning

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Cancer cells exhibit altered local dielectric properties which can be assessed using electrical impedance scanning (EIS). The study was aimed at clarifying influence of lesion size and depth on EIS performance. From a series of 387 lesions (129 malignant and 258 benign) from 363 patients being sonographically and/or mammographically evaluated, size and depth information was not available in 112 lesions, size was available in 86 lesions and additional depth information was available in 189 lesions, respectively, while performing EIS. Lesions were either histologically verified or had a follow-up of at least 2 years. One hundred three of 129 malignant lesions and 165 of 258 benign lesions were correctly detected (sensitivity 79.8%, specificity 64.0%, accuracy 71.9%). Sensitivity without knowledge of size and depth was 64.6% (10 of 16 malignant lesions detected). This value increased to 76.2% (32 of 42) with knowledge of the size and further increased to 85.9% with knowledge of size and depth (61 of 71). Specificity values in the three subgroups were almost similar: 64.6 (62 of 96), 65.9 (29 of 44), and 62.7% (74 of 118), respectively. Accuracy rises from 63.6% (without knowledge of size/depth) to 71.1 and 74.3% (with size knowledge and with size and depth knowledge, respectively). Accuracy of EIS improved significantly by including sonographical information about depth and size into the analysis. Ultrasound examination should be performed prior to EIS.

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