As part of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center’s efforts to improve the standard of cancer treatments for patients worldwide, the Department of Radiology at Memorial Sloan Kettering has developed a training program entitled “The Applicability of the Bi-Rads Lexicon to Mammographic Detection of Breast Cancer in South East Europe” with support from the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Breast cancer incidence in South East Europe (SEE) is the third highest in the world, after North America and Western Europe. The objective of this training program is to bring the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) lexicon of the American College of Radiology to South East Europe. This lexicon provides a standardized language for the interpretation of breast imaging studies, including mammography, ultrasound, and MRI. The goal of the project is to disseminate knowledge of BI-RADS and facilitate the creation of databases for longitudinal studies relating breast imaging findings with pathologic outcomes in SEE countries, starting with Croatia. Intensive individualized instruction in the BI-RADS lexicon and in clinical research methodology is given to selected Croatian radiologists who come to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center through the Breast Cancer Research Foundation grant. As part of their fellowship, these trainees translate the lexicon into their native language so that it may be used by colleagues when they return home. To date, five Croatian radiologists have completed training.
As a result of these efforts, Croatia began breast cancer screening in October 2006. In addition to furthering their work with Croatian radiologists, efforts have been expanded to include radiologists from other Eastern European countries, including Romania and Russia.