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Radiology. 2001 Sep;220(3):787-94.

Potential of computer-aided diagnosis to reduce variability in radiologists' interpretations of mammograms depicting microcalcifications.

Author information

1
Kurt Rossmann Laboratories for Radiologic Image Research, Dept of Radiology, Univ of Chicago, 5841 S Maryland Ave, MC2026, Chicago, IL 60637, USA. y-jiang@uchicago.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To evaluate whether computer-aided diagnosis can reduce interobserver variability in the interpretation of mammograms.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Ten radiologists interpreted mammograms showing clustered microcalcifications in 104 patients. Decisions for biopsy or follow-up were made with and without a computer aid, and these decisions were compared. The computer was used to estimate the likelihood that a microcalcification cluster was due to a malignancy. Variability in the radiologists' recommendations for biopsy versus follow-up was then analyzed.

RESULTS:

Variation in the radiologists' accuracy, as measured with the SD of the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, was reduced by 46% with computer aid. Access to the computer aid increased the agreement among all observers from 13% to 32% of the total cases (P <.001), while the kappa value increased from 0.19 to 0.41 (P <.05). Use of computer aid eliminated two-thirds of the substantial disagreements in which two radiologists recommended biopsy and routine screening in the same patient (P <.05).

CONCLUSION:

In addition to its demonstrated potential to improve diagnostic accuracy, computer-aided diagnosis has the potential to reduce the variability among radiologists in the interpretation of mammograms.

PMID:
11526283
DOI:
10.1148/radiol.220001257
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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