By Erik L. Ridley, staff writer
    November 15, 2010

    Tuesday, November 30 | 11:30 a.m.-11:40 a.m. | SSG01-07 | Room E450A
    In this session, researchers from Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto will present data showing a high sensitivity for computer-aided detection (CAD) technology in detecting amorphous calcifications on full-field digital mammography (FFDM) studies.

    Even though FFDM has been shown to be more accurate than film-screen mammography in women with dense breasts, identifying amorphous calcifications is frequently difficult on either method, said presenter Anabel Scaranelo, MD, PhD. As a result, the researchers sought to evaluate the use of CAD with FFDM in this application.

    The study team retrospectively applied CAD to FFDM images of 122 women with amorphous calcifications; results showed that CAD identified all 36 amorphous calcifications that turned out to be malignant. In addition, CAD yielded 85% sensitivity in detecting lesions deemed to be high-risk and 80% sensitivity in benign amorphous calcifications.

    The use of CAD directly with FFDM was much more effective than when the technology is applied to digitized film-screens, Scaranelo said.

    "This is very important because of the issue of reliability and reproducibility of the method," she told

    In other results, Scaranelo will describe how CAD markings resulted in a 29% likelihood of malignancy, a higher figure than found in previous studies.

    "When we correlated with patient risk factors, we found amorphous calcifications [to be] 1.76 times likely to be malignant or show 'high-risk' lesions in survival patients or women with prior breast biopsy showing [atypical ductal hyperplasia] in the contralateral breast," she said. "This emphasizes the need for early detection of precancerous lesions, particularly among amorphous calcifications."

    Last Updated np 11/12/2010 11:59:36 AM

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