Congratulations to our EUSOBI Rising Star, Dr. Paola Clauser, PhD & EUSOBI Scientific Committee Chair, Dr. Ritse Mann, PhD
February 17, 2022 (AuntMinnieEurope.com) – Radiology has a deep pool of talent that spans the entire continent of Europe. This is one of the key conclusions to draw from the list of award winners for the 2022 EuroMinnies. The eight recipients of the individual and industry awards come from eight different European nations.
EUSOBI is proud to have 2 EUSOBI Executive Board members among the award winners for the 2022 EuroMinnies.
In the EuroMinnies awards scheme, the full list of semifinalists was based on nominations submitted in late 2021 by members of AuntMinnieEurope.com. An expert panel comprising members of the editorial advisory board, past winners, and regular columnists selected two finalists in each category to go forward to the finals of the EuroMinnies. The judges then chose the winners in a second ballot.
Below you can find personal statements & information of Dr. Paola Clauser, winner of the award category “Radiology Rising Star” as well as of Dr. Ritse Mann & Dr. Marc Lobbes for the category “Most Significant News Event in European Radiology”. Interviews and texts were contributed by AuntMinnieEurope.com writers. The full article can be found here: https://www.auntminnieeurope.com/index.aspx?sec=sup&sub=cto&pag=dis&ItemID=621149
Radiology Rising Star
EuroMinnies 2022 winner: Dr. Paola Clauser, PhD, radiologist, Medical University of Vienna, Austria
During her 30s, Dr. Paola Clauser, PhD, made a career switch from Udine, Italy, to Vienna, and it’s been a chastening experience.
“The transition was not easy — sometimes it still isn’t. It was not just about moving to a different country, but also from a small university in a small city to one of the biggest universities and hospitals in Europe in a capital city. I really had some hard times in the first few years,” she said. To be able to report in German, she did many months of intensive courses, and she was helped greatly by her colleagues. “The reporting style here is very structured and schematic, which allows me to learn fast how to write meaningful, understandable reports,” Clauser explained. “The big challenge was to learn medical terminology and anatomy again. While Latin terms are accepted, German words are more common, and they rarely resemble Latin terms. Improving my German and my reports is still very much a work in progress.”
She admits she entered radiology by chance. She wanted to do something that involved an interventional component. In her second year of residency at Udine, she started working in breast imaging, and she never looked back. “All the consultants I worked with in Udine have had a strong impact on my career,” she said. “The chief of the department at the time, Prof. Massimo Bazzocchi, was an inspiration for all of us. He taught me the importance of talking with the patients and listening to them.” In Vienna, working with her colleagues, in particular Prof. Dr. Pascal Baltzer, taught her that research is challenging but also exciting and fun.
Clauser co-founded the European Society of Breast Imaging (EUSOBI) Young Club (EYC) with Prof. Katja Pinker, but the idea came from Prof. Francesco Sardanelli. “The aim is to give a voice and support young radiologists and to promote breast imaging,” she pointed out. “We were enthusiastic about the project, and we were lucky to get a lot of help from many people on the way. They share with me the honor of this award — as do my colleagues in Vienna.” The plan is to continue the group’s successful series of webinars and online events at ECR and the EUSOBI annual meeting. “We have a lot of ideas, so we will need more help, and there will be a call for new EYC committee members soon. I will have to leave the Young Club at 40. Till then, I hope I will be able to keep on working with them, either as a chair or as a committee member.”
As for her own research, Clauser is finalizing the data analysis on a prospective study of fluoroethylcholine as an alternative tracer in PET-MRI of breast cancer patients. Part of the study has already been presented at the RSNA. “I’d like to look more in-depth into the topic of tracers for advanced breast cancer staging. I am part of the EUSOBI diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) working group, and with the pandemic seemingly giving us more freedom again, I plan to continue with multicentric collaborations on DWI standardization,” she remarked. Clauser is also focusing on the clinical role of contrast-enhanced mammography and gathering evidence for new guidelines. “What excites me the most, though, is screening and the move towards personalized screening. Early diagnosis is still one of the most powerful weapons we have against cancer.” She said she enjoys being directly responsible for patient management. Also, the work of a breast radiologist is very deeply connected with all the other specialists working in breast diagnostics and therapy, she added.
It’s impossible yet to assess the impact of the pandemic on screening, but the team in Vienna is already seeing the effect on symptomatic patients, many of whom delayed visits and are now presenting with more advanced cancers. According to Clauser, “Many organizational and communication aspects could have been managed much better during the pandemic. But one always knows better afterward.”
Most Significant News Event in European Radiology
EuroMinnies 2022 winner: Dutch debate pros and cons of contrast-enhanced mammography and MRI for screening women with dense breast tissue
Should screening of dense breasts be done with MRI and not with contrast-enhanced mammography (CEM)? This question lay at the heart of a heated discussion that took place in the Netherlands throughout 2021 and still awaits resolution. The debate has implications for breast imaging across Europe, and it looks set to come to prominence on 2 March 2022, when a special pros and cons session is devoted to contrast-enhanced breast screening at the ECR Overture online meeting.
Dr. Ritse Mann, PhD, who is responsible for clinical breast research at the radiology department of Radboud UMC in Nijmegen and also who also works at the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam, will speak in support of the motion: “This house believes that intermediate risk screening should be done with breast MRI and not with CEM.” Mann is an executive board member of the European Society of Breast Imaging (EUSOBI), a member of the scientific advisory board of the Dutch cancer society (KWF), and course director of the annual Nijmegen advanced breast imaging course.
In the opposite corner is Dr. Marc Lobbes, PhD, a breast radiologist at the Zuyderland Medical Center and the Maastricht University Medical Center in the Netherlands. During the 2 March session, he will argue that “this house believes that intermediate risk screening should NOT be done with breast MRI but with CEM.”
The upcoming debate promises to be a lively and intriguing affair, but the matter is unlikely to be resolved until further evidence and data are available. According to Lobbes and Mann, a new trial is being designed by the former collaborators of the DENSE trial (November 2019, New England Journal of Medicine), which involved senior Dutch MR radiologists.
“At this point there is a call for such a study, and potential research groups are looking into that,” Lobbes and Mann told AuntMinnieEurope.com on 16 February 2022 in a joint statement. “However, we are experiencing challenges in fulfilling the requirements for that call and are looking into the most optimal study design that gives answer to all the questions raised, but designing such a large study requires time to perform, and the COVID-19 pandemic did not help in that regard either. Right now, we don’t have any real outcomes to report, but further news is expected in late spring/early summer.”
It is unclear which proposal is likely to be accepted and what the follow-up study will look like. These studies must be large and require a lot of resources, so plotting them takes time.
One thing’s for sure: this debate looks certain to rumble on throughout this year. The outcome is eagerly awaited by the European breast imaging community. According to Mann, EUSOBI will soon provide new recommendations for screening of women with extremely dense breasts. Watch this space.