Low-Dose Radiation Feasible for Digital Mammography

September 7, 2016

Digital mammography may be feasible using low-dose radiation dose techniques.

Low-dose techniques for digital mammography may be feasible, as results are not substantially affected by variations in radiation dose, according to a study published in Radiology.

Researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia performed a retrospective analysis to determine the impact of radiation dose on breast density estimation in digital mammography.

The researchers analyzed 5,832 images from 486 women who had undergone breast screening with a combination of dose protocols, including standard full-field digital mammography, low-dose digital mammography, and digital breast tomosynthesis. Clinical Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) density assessment results were also available from the trial reports.

The results showed that the radiation dose of image acquisition did not significantly affect quantitative density measurements. The percent density demonstrated a high overall correlation between protocols. The researchers did find, however, that differences in breast percent density (1.04% and 3.84%) were observed within high BI-RADS density categories. They were significantly correlated across the different acquisition dose levels.[[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_crop","fid":"51665","attributes":{"alt":"Mammography","class":"media-image media-image-right","id":"media_crop_5156367237616","media_crop_h":"0","media_crop_image_style":"-1","media_crop_instance":"6372","media_crop_rotate":"0","media_crop_scale_h":"0","media_crop_scale_w":"0","media_crop_w":"0","media_crop_x":"0","media_crop_y":"0","style":"height: 114px; width: 171px; border-width: 0px; border-style: solid; margin: 1px; float: right;","title":"©zlikovec/Shutterstock.com","typeof":"foaf:Image"}}]]

“Precision and reproducibility of automated breast density measurements with digital mammography are not substantially affected by variations in radiation dose; thus, the use of low-dose techniques for the purpose of density estimation may be feasible,” the researchers concluded.