Two-dimensional (2-D) x-ray mammography, the current primary screening method for early detection of breast cancer in women, is a valuable tool but has some limitations. Surrounding normal tissue can mask lesions, and 2-D views do not provide direct information about the volumetric appearance—meaning the three-dimensional physical shape—of a detected lesion.
A novel technique called stereoscopic digital mammography (SDM) addresses these limitations by mimicking the way that human eyes work together to form a 3-D image. The technique uses digital mammography equipment that's been modified to allow the X-ray tube to move separately from the cassette. The resulting images are viewed on two monitors mounted one above the other.
"Our eyes see the world from two slightly different perspectives," said Carl J. D'Orsi, M.D., from the Department of Radiology and Imaging Sciences at Emory University School of Medicine and the Winship Cancer Institute at Emory University, both in Atlanta. "In this technique, the X-ray tube functions as the eyeball, with two different images providing slightly different views of the internal structure of the breast."
By using a unique workstation and polarizing lenses, SDM has the ability to identify lesions at different depths within the breast volume, potentially reducing both false positive findings and recalls while enabling more accurate diagnosis.
Dr. D'Orsi and colleagues recently compared SDM to 2-D digital mammography in 779 patients at elevated risk of developing breast cancer because of personal or family history. Patients received both exams in a single visit, and two experienced radiologists independently interpreted the final total of 1,298 exams. Imaging findings were correlated with results of one-year follow up or biopsy.
SDM significantly improved the accuracy of cancer detection. The specificity of 91.2 percent was better than the 87.8 percent rate for 2-D digital mammography; and the accuracy of 90.9 percent, compared with 87.4 percent for 2-D digital mammography, was also a statistically significant improvement.
"We found that the stereoscopic technique could significantly decrease the need for calling women back for additional exams," Dr. D'Orsi said.
Dr. D'Orsi and colleagues are expanding their research to study
SDM with a lower radiation dose in the general screening population. The radiation dose used in the study was approximately double the standard dose for mammography.
"In this study, we used a high-risk population to get an adequate number of cancers, and we acquired each of the images comprising the stereo pairs with a full standard X-ray dose," he said. "Now that we know the technique is worthwhile, we're repeating the study in the general population with a dose comparable to routine screening mammography."
"Stereoscopic Digital Mammography: Improved Specificity and Reduced Rate of Recall in a Prospective Clinical Trial." Collaborating with Dr. D'Orsi were David J. Getty, Ph.D., Ronald M. Pickett, Ph.D., Ioannis Sechopoulos, Ph.D., Mary S. Newell, M.D., Kathleen R. Gundry, M.D., Sandra R. Bates, M.D., Robert M. Nishikawa, Ph.D., Edward A. Sickles, M.D., Andrew Karellas, Ph.D., and Ellen M. D'Orsi, R.T. (R)(M).
Radiology is edited by Herbert Y. Kressel, M.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass., and owned and published by the Radiological Society of North America, Inc. (http://radiology.rsna.org/)
RSNA is an association of more than 50,000 radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and related scientists, promoting excellence in patient care and health care delivery through education, research and technologic innovation.
The Society is based in Oak Brook, Ill. (RSNA.org)
For patient-friendly information on breast imaging, visit RadiologyInfo.org.
Linda Brooks | EurekAlert!
'Neuron-reading' nanowires could accelerate development of drugs for neurological diseases
12.04.2017 | University of California - San Diego
PET radiotracer design for monitoring targeted immunotherapy
10.04.2017 | Society of Nuclear Medicine
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...
Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.
A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine
21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy