Category 4 and 5 mammograms tend to be the most potentially troublesome because they are triggered by very specific findings of abnormalities. In Category 4 and 5, the two most frequent findings are:
Clusters of microcalcifications, concentrated groupings of tiny calcium deposits
Irregular or “star-shaped” masses
Almost half of all cancer detected with mammograms stem from the discovery of microcalcification clusters. Clusters of microcalcifications are frequently associated with ductal carcinoma in stiu (DCIS). DCIS is the most common form of non-invasive, early stage breast cancer. Treated early, DCIS is extremely curable. The presence of microcalcification clusters usually leads to a Category 4 or 5 evaluation.
Breast masses that are irregularly shaped (often “star-shaped”) also generally are indicative of cancer. Radiologists that discover these types of masses usually assign a mammogram a Category 4 or 5 rating.