Researchers at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston have confirmed what mammographers have long suspected: Digital screening mammograms may take twice as long to read as film.
Dr. Tamara Miner Haygood and colleagues clocked four radiologists as they interpreted 268 digital and 189 screen-film mammograms. They compared interpretation times for such variables as BI-RADS classification or availability of older soft- or hard-display comparative studies. Researchers also noted individual radiologists’ modus operandi. They found that it took all readers an average of four minutes to interpret digital screening mammograms but only slightly more than two minutes to read film studies. They published their findings in the January issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology.