The potential use of ultra-low radiation dose images in digital mammography--a clinical proof-of-concept study in craniocaudal views
SourceBritish Journal of Radiology, 88, 1047, (2015), pp. 20140626
Article / Letter to editor
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British Journal of Radiology
SubjectRadboudumc 17: Women's cancers RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
OBJECTIVE: To estimate the potential of low-dose images in digital mammography by analysing the effect of substantial dose reduction in craniocaudal (CC) views on clinical performance. METHODS: At routine mammography, additional CC views were obtained with about 10% of the standard dose. Five radiologists retrospectively read the standard [mediolateral oblique (MLO) + CC] and combination low-dose mammograms (standard MLO + low-dose CC). If present, lesion type, conspicuity and suggested work-up were recorded. Final diagnoses were made by histology or follow up. A t-test or chi(2) test was used to compare results. RESULTS: 421 cases were included, presenting 5 malignancies, 66 benign lesions and multiple non-specific radiologic features. Using MLO with low-dose CC, all lesions were detected by at least one reader, but altogether less often than with standard mammography (sensitivity, 73.9% vs 81.5%). Missed lesions concerned all types. Lesions detected with both protocols were described similarly (p = 0.084) with comparable work-up recommendations (p = 0.658). CONCLUSION: Mammography with ultra-low-dose CC images particularly influences detection. While sensitivity decreased, specificity was unaffected. In this proof-of-concept study a lower limit was to be determined that is not intended nor applicable for clinical practice. This should facilitate further research in optimization of a low-dose approach, which has potential in a relatively young and largely asymptomatic population. ADVANCES IN KNOWLEDGE: Tungsten/silver-acquired mammography images might facilitate substantial dose reduction. Ultra-low-dose CC images reduce sensitivity, but not specificity. Low-dose images have potential in a largely young and asymptomatic population; a baseline is set for further research in optimization of a low-dose approach.
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