Endometrial thickness in tamoxifen-treated patients: Correlation with clinical and pathologic findings Journal Article


Authors: Hann, L. E.; Giess, C. S.; Bach, A. M.; Tao, Y.; Baum, H. J.; Barakat, R. R.
Article Title: Endometrial thickness in tamoxifen-treated patients: Correlation with clinical and pathologic findings
Abstract: OBJECTIVE. This study was performed to evaluate sonographic measurements of endometrial thickness in postmenopausal breast cancer patients being treated with tamoxifen and to correlate endometrial thickness with pathology, symptoms, and duration of tamoxifen treatment. MATERIALS AND METHODS. Pelvic sonograms and medical records of 91 postmenopausal breast cancer patients being treated with tamoxifen were retrospectively reviewed. Histologic results were available in 46 patients (51%). Endometrial thickness was measured in anteroposterior dimension and was considered normal when less than 8 mm. Endometrial thickness was then correlated with histopathologic findings, symptoms, and duration of tamoxifen treatment. RESULTS. Forty- seven examinations (52%) showed endometrial thickness of less than 8 mm and 44 examinations (48%) showed endometrial thickness of 8 mm or more. Endometrial biopsy was performed in 10 women (21%) in whom the endometrial thickness was less than 8 mm, revealing seven normal endometria, one endometrial polyp, and two insufficient samples. Endometrial biopsy was performed in 36 women (82%) in whom endometrial thickness was 8 mm or more, revealing three cases with more than one diagnosis. In this group, diagnoses included 14 normal endometria, 12 endometrial polyps, four endocervical polyps, three hyperplasias, two endometrial cancers, one papillary syncytial metaplasia, one cystic change, one inflammatory debris, and one insufficient sample. Postmenopausal bleeding prompted 20 studies, 12 of which revealed endometrial thickness of 8 mm or more. We found no difference in endometrial thickness of patients who had bleeding versus those who had no bleeding. Endometrial thickness increased with the duration of tamoxifen treatment. Seventy-three women being treated with tamoxifen for less than 5 years had a median endometrial thickness of 5 mm, and 44% of biopsies yielded abnormal results. Eighteen women receiving tamoxifen 5 years or longer had a median endometrial thickness of 14 mm, and 58% of endometrial biopsies in this group were abnormal. The two endometrial cancers occurred in women who were treated with tamoxifen for 6 years. Correlation between duration of tamoxifen use and endometrial thickness was significant (p < .026). CONCLUSION. The majority of women being treated with tamoxifen were asymptomatic, but 48% of sonograms revealed an endometrial thickness of 8 mm or more. Endometrial polyps, the most common abnormality, were diagnosed in 33% of biopsies performed for endometrial thickness of 8 mm or more. Endometrial thickness showed no correlation with symptoms, but we found a statistically significant correlation between increased endometrial thickness and duration of tamoxifen treatment that was longer than 5 years.
Keywords: adult; clinical article; aged; middle aged; histopathology; treatment planning; endometrial neoplasms; breast cancer; tumor biopsy; breast neoplasms; retrospective study; biopsy; time factors; echography; tamoxifen; antineoplastic agents, hormonal; polyps; endometrium; humans; human; male; female; priority journal; article
Journal Title: American Journal of Roentgenology
Volume: 168
Issue: 3
ISSN: 0361-803X
Publisher: American Roentgen Ray Society  
Date Published: 1997-03-01
Start Page: 657
End Page: 661
Language: English
PUBMED: 9057510
PROVIDER: scopus
DOI: 10.2214/ajr.168.3.9057510
DOI/URL:
Notes: Article -- Presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Roentgen Ray Society, that took place in May 1996 in San Diego, CA -- Export Date: 17 March 2017 -- Source: Scopus
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MSK Authors
  1. Richard R Barakat
    611 Barakat
  2. Ariadne Bach
    56 Bach
  3. Catherine S Giess
    11 Giess
  4. Lucy E Hann
    68 Hann
  5. Heather J Baum
    1 Baum
  6. Yue Tao
    17 Tao