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Incidence of axillary adenopathy in breast imaging after COVID-19 vaccination

JAMARobinson KA, Maimone S, Gococo-Benore DA, et al. | July 26, 2021

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Researchers sought to report the actual incidence, timing, and characteristics of mammographic axillary adenopathy following COVID-19 vaccination by retrospectively analyzing data of patients who received at least 1 injection of COVID-19 vaccine fewer than 90 days prior to either screening or diagnostic mammography at the Jacoby Center for Breast Health, Mayo Clinic, Florida, between January 15 and March 22, 2021. Among 750 women assessed in this study, 23 (3%) patients had detection of axillary adenopathy on mammography, two of these were symptomatic. Although there was low incidence of COVID-19 vaccine-induced adenopathy in this study at 3% compared with 16% of self-reported axillary swelling in previous COVID-19 vaccine trials; this incidence is still higher relative to axillary adenopathy in otherwise normal mammography, which was described as 0.02% to 0.04%. Hence, they support performing routine inquiries concerning recent history of COVID-19 vaccination. Decrease in the incidence of adenopathy occurred over time with no adenopathy detected in patients who received the vaccine more than 28 days previously, which supports the recommendations from Society of Breast Imaging. Further, more likelihood for detecting adenopathy was described for patients with symptomatic adenopathy.

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