Digital X-Ray Insider

Dear Digital X-Ray Insider,

Medical imaging has swung into action to battle the novel coronavirus outbreak. But which imaging modality is best for detecting signs of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus?

CT got most of the early headlines, with some reports stating that the modality was even more sensitive than DNA testing. Later, ultrasound seemed to carve out a role, especially with point-of-care scanners.

But chest radiography is starting to draw renewed attention. The technology has some distinct advantages -- mobile x-ray systems can be taken directly to patients, obviating the need to transport possibly infected individuals to the radiology department. And mobile systems are more easily disinfected than CT scanners -- indeed, mobile x-ray systems are specifically designed to be used in environments where infection control is paramount.

X-ray may lack the sensitivity of CT or DNA testing, but due to these advantages it may still have a role to play in diagnosing and managing COVID-19 in patients. Find out digital x-ray's strengths and weaknesses in this edition's Insider Exclusive.

In other radiography-related COVID-19 news, Canadian researchers have developed an open-source artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm designed to detect signs of the disease on digital x-rays. The algorithm performed well in a test set of cases, although more validation is needed before it can be used clinically.

Meanwhile, researchers from Seattle who encountered one of the first COVID-19 outbreaks in the U.S. describe the top five findings on x-ray in patients who were admitted to their hospital. But the shortcomings of x-ray for COVID-19 were explained by South Korean researchers, who found that chest radiography missed some cases that were later found on CT.

While COVID-19 is grabbing most of the headlines, new research continues to be produced on clinical applications for digital x-ray. A new AI algorithm was found to be useful for analyzing digital x-ray and CT images for signs of osteoporosis, while Swiss researchers discussed their work using AI for detecting fractures on wrist x-rays.

Finally, learn how the combination of x-ray and ultrasound was used to manage cases of complicated pneumonia in children.

Get these stories and more in your Digital X-Ray Community, and stay safe out there!

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