BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Medical Policy Manual

Computer-Aided Detection of Malignancy with Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Breast


The use of computer-aided detection (CAD), including computer algorithm analysis of MRI data for lesion detection/characterization, is proposed as a supplement to a radiologist’s interpretation of contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the breast.  CAD systems for MRI are intended to improve the specificity of MRI in detecting or measuring malignant tissue, while maintaining the generally high sensitivity of MRI. 


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Published well-designed, randomized, controlled trials are lacking; therefore, the evidence is insufficient to determine whether the use of computer-aided detection with MRI of the breast improves net health outcomes.


American College of Radiology. (2014). ACR practice parameter for the performance of magnetic resonance imaging-guided breast interventional procedures. Retrieved November 13, 2015 from

BlueCross BlueShield Association. Medical Policy Reference Manual. (9:2016). Computer-aided evaluation of malignancy with magnetic resonance imaging of the breast (6.01.45). Retrieved August 24, 2017 from BlueWeb. (14 articles and/or guidelines reviewed)

Dorrius, M.D., Weide, MJ-v, Ooijen, P.A., Pijnappel, R.M., & Oudkerk, M. (2011). Computer-aided detection in breast MRI: a systematic review and meta-analysis. European Radiology, 21 (8), 1600-1608. (Level 1 evidence)

Song, S., Seo, B., Cho, K., Woo, O., Son, G., Kim, C., et al. (2015). Computer-aided detection (CAD) system for breast MRI in assessment of local tumor extent, nodal status, and multifocality of invasive breast cancers: preliminary study. Cancer Imaging, (2015), 15:1. (Level 4 evidence)

Yang, Q., Li, L., Zhang, J., Shao, G., and Zheng, B. (2014, July) A computerized global MR image feature analysis scheme to assist diagnosis of breast cancer: a preliminary assessment. European Journal of Radiology, 83 (7), 1086-1091. (Level 4 evidence)

Yun, S., Sohn, Y., & Seo, M. (2016). Differentiation of benign and metastatic axillary lymph nodes in breast cancer: additive value of MRI computer-aided evaluation. Clinical Radiology, 71 (4), 403.e1-7. Abstract retrieved October 18, 2016 from PubMed database.

U. S. Food and Drug Administration. (2004, July). Center for Devices and Radiological Health. 510(k) Premarket Notification Database. K041286. Retrieved June 25, 2009 from

U. S. Food and Drug Administration. (2003, June). Center for Devices and Radiological Health. 510(k) Premarket Notification Database. K031350. Retrieved June 25, 2009 from




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