Endometrial Evaluation with Transvaginal US and Hysterosonography in Asymptomatic Postmenopausal Women with Breast Cancer Receiving Tamoxifen Journal Articles uri icon

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  • PURPOSE: To determine performance characteristics of transvaginal ultrasonography (US) and hysterosonography for diagnosing endometrial abnormality in asymptomatic postmenopausal women with breast cancer receiving tamoxifen. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The authors prospectively examined 138 women receiving tamoxifen by using transvaginal US, hysterosonography, and office hysteroscopy. The combined hysteroscopic-histopathologic diagnosis was the reference standard. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and likelihood ratios of transvaginal US and hysterosonography were calculated. RESULTS: All 138 women underwent transvaginal US; 104, successful hysterosonography; and 117, successful hysteroscopy. Uterine abnormality was present in 47 (40.2%) of 117 women: 45 with polyps and two with submucosal fibroids. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis revealed 6 mm to be the optimal endometrial thickness cutoff for diagnosing endometrial abnormalities. When a thickness greater than 6 mm or a focal endometrial finding was considered abnormal, transvaginal US had a sensitivity of 85.1% and a specificity of 55.7%. In 92 women who completed transvaginal US, hysterosonography, and hysteroscopy, hysterosonography was more specific (79.2%; P =.008) but not significantly more sensitive (89.7%; P =.508) than transvaginal US. When women with abnormal transvaginal US findings were further examined with hysterosonography, the sequential combination of transvaginal US and hysterosonography was more specific (77.1%) than transvaginal US alone (P <.001), without a significant decrease in sensitivity (78.7%; P =.25). CONCLUSION: In asymptomatic postmenopausal women receiving tamoxifen, 6 mm is the optimal endometrial thickness cutoff for diagnosing endometrial abnormalities with transvaginal US. Further examination with hysterosonography can improve specificity by reducing the high false-positive rate of transvaginal US.


  • Fong, Katherine
  • Kung, Rose
  • Lytwyn, Alice
  • Trudeau, Maureen
  • Chapman, William
  • Nugent, Patricia
  • Glanc, Phyllis
  • Manchul, Lee
  • Szabunio, Diane
  • Myhr, Terri

publication date

  • September 2001