Phantom-based comparison of conventional versus phase-contrast mammography for LCD soft-copy diagnosis

Abstract

Liquid crystal display (LCD) of mammograms provides soft-copy results that differ in conventional and phase contrast mammography (PCM). PCM potentially offers the highest quality of sharpness and graininess, an edge emphasis effect on the object, and the highest image resolution. However, when the image is displayed on an LCD, the resolution depends on the pixel pitch and the PCM image data must be diminished. We investigated the observed effect on spatial resolution and contrast when conventional or phase contrast mammograms are viewed on an LCD. Using the tissue-equivalent phantom (Model 1011A), a conventional mammogram and a magnification radiography image were obtained with a PCM system. This phantom contains simulated fibers, microcalcifications, and masses. The PCM image was reduced 1/1.75 to render it consistent with life size mammography using the nearest neighbor, bilinear, and bicubic interpolation methods. The images were displayed on a five million (5M)-pixel LCD with 100 % magnification. Ten mammography technicians observed the reduction images displayed on LCDs and reported their results. In the detectability of the microcalcifications, there was no significant difference between conventional mammograms and reduced PCM images. Regarding fibers and masses, detectability using reduced images was higher than those of conventional images. The detectability using images reduced by the nearest-neighbor method was lower than those of images reduced by two other interpolation methods. Bilinear interpolation was affected by the smoothing effect, while CNR was increased. In addition, since the noise of PCM image was reduced by an air gap effect, high detectability of key image features was found. Soft-copy display of phase-contrast mammograms is feasible with LCDs, while detectability of fibers and masses was best with bilinear interpolation and use of an air gap.

DOI: 10.1007/s11548-012-0805-3

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Cite this paper

@article{Ihori2012PhantombasedCO, title={Phantom-based comparison of conventional versus phase-contrast mammography for LCD soft-copy diagnosis}, author={Akiko Ihori and Naotoshi Fujita and Akihiro Sugiura and Naruomi Yasuda and Yoshie Kodera}, journal={International Journal of Computer Assisted Radiology and Surgery}, year={2012}, volume={8}, pages={621-633} }