Radioactive technetium phosphate bone scanning in preoperative assessment and follow-up study of patients with primary cancer of the breast
Seventy-five female patients with early primary cancer of the breast were studied by bone scanning with 99mTc labeled phosphate at the time of initial presentation and serially during follow-up examination. Eleven patients had an abnormal bone scan at the time of presentation. During follow-up periods, which have ranged from three to 34 months with a mean of 16 months, abnormal bone scans have developed in a further 13 patients. To date, nine of the 24 patients with an abnormal bone scan have died, while only one of the 51 with a persistently normal scan has died. It is concluded that an abnormal bone scan carries a significant risk of earlier death due to metastatic disease.