Computer-aided detection is increasingly being used in screening and diagnostic mammography

Oct 02, 2010

The use of computer-aided detection (CAD) is increasing, in both screening and diagnostic mammography, according to a study in the October issue of the Journal of the American College of Radiology. CAD software systems highlight and alert the radiologist of abnormal areas of density, mass or calcification on a digitized mammographic image (of the breast) that may indicate the presence of cancer.

Screening mammography is an X-ray exam of the breast that is used as a screening tool to detect early in women experiencing no symptoms. Diagnostic mammography is an X-ray exam of the breast that is performed in order to evaluate a breast complaint of abnormality detected by physical exam or routine screening mammography.

Researchers at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA, reviewed codes for screening and diagnostic mammography (both screen-film and digital) as well as codes for screening and diagnostic CAD from the Medicare Part B Physician/Supplier Procedure Summary Master Files for 2004 - 2008.

In 2004, a total of 5,728,419 were performed, and CAD was used in 2,257,434 (39 percent) of them. In 2008, a total of 5,827,326 screening were performed, and CAD was used in 4,305,595 (74 percent) of them. In 2004, a total of 1,835,700 diagnostic mammograms were performed, and CAD was used in 360,483 (20 percent) of them. In 2008, a total of 1,682,026 diagnostic mammograms were performed, and CAD was used in 845,461 (50 percent) of them. "By 2008, CAD was used in about three quarters of all screening exams and half of all diagnostic exams," said Vijay M. Rao, MD, lead author of the study.

"The use of CAD is controversial, while some support it and others are critical of it. Nonetheless, while there remains debate over the efficacy of CAD, it is apparent that radiologists are increasingly utilizing this technology and that it is becoming standard practice in breast diagnosis," said Rao.

Explore further: Common painkillers may help prevent certain skin cancers, study finds

More information: www.jacr.org

Provided by American College of Radiology

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New mammography technology improves cancer detection

Nov 28, 2007

A new radiological diagnostic tool called stereo mammography allows clinicians to detect more lesions and could significantly reduce the number of women who are recalled for additional tests following routine screening mammography.

Recommended for you

Putting the brakes on cancer

10 hours ago

A study led by the University of Dundee, in collaboration with researchers at our University, has uncovered an important role played by a tumour suppressor gene, helping scientists to better understand how ...

Peanut component linked to cancer spread

11 hours ago

Scientists at the University of Liverpool have found that a component of peanuts could encourage the spread and survival of cancer cells in the body.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.