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Eur J Radiol. 1999 Jul;31(1):25-34.

Full-field digital mammography designed as a complete system.

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  • 1GE Medical Systems, Buc, France.


Although mammography is currently considered by many to be the best tool for the early detection of breast cancer, conventional film-screen imaging is still far from perfect. A fundamental limitation of film-screen mammography is the fact that the detection, display and storage devices are one and the same, making it impossible to separately optimize each device. In addition to a potentially equivalent or better image quality compared to the film-screen technology, full-field digital mammography (FFDM) will provide the radiologist with numerous advantages: digital image management, digital data transfer and new medical applications. Nevertheless, to fulfil the potential of digital mammography, an FFDM unit must not only provide an outstanding technology for X-ray detection, but should be designed as a complete system. Each component of the FFDM system should be designed to provide or to increase the current image quality, the current ease of use and the current throughput: the X-ray tube, the gantry, the image receptor packaging, the detector, the acquisition electronics, the softcopy review workstation, the user interface, as well as the network capabilities.

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