CAD package for lung cancer debuts in Europe

March 8, 2003

Computer-aided detection (CAD) pioneer R2 Technology is using this week's ECR to launch its new software system designed to aid lung cancer diagnosis. The CAD package for lung CT marks a significant step in the company's plan to broaden its focus from

Computer-aided detection (CAD) pioneer R2 Technology is using this week's ECR to launch its new software system designed to aid lung cancer diagnosis. The CAD package for lung CT marks a significant step in the company's plan to broaden its focus from mammography to additional anatomical areas and modalities.

"Once you've made some algorithms and built a platform that can detect cancer, you just need to teach it what cancer looks like in those other organs," said Edward Barker, R2's director of strategic sales.

R2 is showcasing the CAD software at the Vienna meeting as an integral part of its ImageChecker CT LN-1000 system. The ImageChecker CT display workstation offers a number of options to assist review of thoracic CT exams in 2D and 3D formats. These include LungMap for navigation and nodule visualization, as well as automated volume and area measurement tools.

"We have 3D data out of CT, so we can actually see the lung nodule in multiple dimensions. We can separate it from the background so it gives us a very accurate way of detecting small lesions down to about 4 mm," Barker said.

CAD functionality provides additional help in detecting early cancers by coloring suspicious nodules green. Findings can then be saved for comparison in follow-up examinations. This not only boosts diagnostic accuracy but helps radiologists track disease progression, no matter how many nodules are found, according to Barker.

"Because it's a computer, it doesn't care whether it looks for one nodule or 50 nodules. It'll mark them all, and you can record them all. You get your patient back in three months and all you have to do is look at each of those nodules again and see whether or not they have changed," he said.

Beta testing of the prototype product should be complete within a few weeks, and production of the system is expected to begin next month. But U.S. radiologists will have to wait for FDA approval, which is expected later this year, before accessing CAD tools on the system.