Ultrasound-guided breast interventions: Low incidence of infectious complications with use of an uncovered probe

Chris Reisenauer, Robert T. Fazzio, Gina Hesley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE. The purpose of this study was to determine the incidence of infectious complications after ultrasound-guided breast interventions performed with an intermediatelevel disinfection protocol without an ultrasound probe cover. MATERIALS AND METHODS. Two independent institutional databases were searched to identify breast infections in patients who underwent ultrasound-guided interventions between January 2005 and July 2013. The departments of radiology and infectious diseases independently maintained these databases. A comprehensive retrospective chart review based on periprocedural antibiotic use and clinical documentation of infection was also performed to reduce the likelihood of missing potential infectious complications. RESULTS. A total of 12,708 ultrasound-guided breast procedures were performed in the time frame of this study. All potential cases of procedure-related infection were included for subspecialist review in an effort to give the most conservative (highest) estimate of infectious complications. Among these cases, 14 documented cases of possible procedure-related infection were identified, for an overall incidence of 0.11%. All infections were localized skin or soft-tissue infections and adequately treated with a short course of oral antibiotics. No cases of more serious infections or sepsis were found. None of the reported infections required IV antibiotic therapy, percutaneous intervention, surgical intervention, or hospitalization. CONCLUSION. The incidence of infectious complications after an ultrasound-guided breast intervention without an ultrasound probe cover is extremely low. Physicians can use this information in the development of their disinfection protocols and to provide accurate information in counseling patients during preprocedural consultation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1147-1153
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2017


  • Biopsy
  • Breast
  • Infection
  • Procedure
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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