Identification of breast tumors from diathermy smoke by differential ion mobility spectrometry

Maiju Sutinen, Anton Kontunen, Markus Karjalainen, Juha Kiiski, Jill Hannus, Teemu Tolonen, Antti Roine, Niku Oksala, Maiju Lepomäki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Breast cancer is the most frequent cancer in women worldwide. The primary treatment is breast-conserving surgery or mastectomy with an adequate clearance margin. Diathermy blade is used extensively in breast-conserving surgery. Surgical smoke produced as a side product has cancer-specific molecular features. Differential mobility spectrometry (DMS) is a rapid and affordable technology for analysis of complex gas mixtures. In our study we examined surgical smoke from malignant and benign breast tissue created with a diathermy blade using DMS. Material and methods: Punch biopsies of 4 mm diameter from breast cancer surgical specimens were taken during gross dissection of fresh surgical specimen and placed in a well plate. The measurement system is a custom-built device called automatic tissue analysis system (ATAS) based on a DMS sensor. Each specimen was incised with a diathermy blade and the surgical smoke was analyzed. Results: We examined 106 carcinoma samples from 21 malignant breast tumors. Benign samples (n = 198) included macroscopically normal mammary gland (n = 82), adipose tissue (n = 88) and vascular tissue (n = 28). The classification accuracy when comparing malignant samples to all benign samples was 87%. The sensitivity was 80% and the specificity was 90%. The classification accuracy of carcinomas to ductal and lobular was 94%, 47%, respectively. Conclusions: Benign and malignant breast tissue can be identified with ATAS. These results lay foundation for intraoperative margin assessment with DMS from surgical smoke.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-146
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Surgical Oncology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Breast cancer
  • Differential ion mobility spectrometry
  • Electrosurgery
  • Surgical margin
  • Surgical smoke

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1


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