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Cancer Epidemiol. 2017 Apr;47:94-99. doi: 10.1016/j.canep.2017.01.008. Epub 2017 Feb 11.

Breast cancer detection using single-reading of breast tomosynthesis (3D-mammography) compared to double-reading of 2D-mammography: Evidence from a population-based trial.

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Sydney School of Public Health (A27), Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney 2006, Australia. Electronic address:
U.O. Senologia Clinica e Screening Mammografico, Department of Diagnostics, Ospedale di Trento, Azienda Provinciale Servizi Sanitari, Trento, Italy.
Sydney School of Public Health (A27), Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney 2006, Australia.



Most population breast cancer (BC) screening programs use double-reading of 2D-mammography. We recently reported the screening with tomosynthesis or standard mammography-2 (STORM-2) trial, showing that double-read tomosynthesis (pseudo-3D-mammography) detected more BC than double-read 2D-mammography. In this study, we compare screen-detection measures for single-reading of 3D-mammography with those for double-reading of 2D-mammography, to inform screening practice.


This is a secondary analysis based on STORM-2 which prospectively compared 3D-mammography and 2D-mammography in sequential screen-readings. Asymptomatic women ≥49 years who attended population-based screening (Trento, 2013-2015) were recruited. Participants recalled at any screen-read from parallel double-reading arms underwent further testing and/or biopsy. Single-reading of 3D-mammography, integrated with acquired or synthetized 2D-mammograms, was compared to double-reading of 2D-mammograhy alone for screen-detection measures: number of detected BCs, cancer detection rate (CDR), number and percentage of false-positive recall (FPR). Paired binary data were compared using McNemar's test.


Screening detected 90, including 74 invasive, BCs in 85 of 9672 participants. CDRs for single-reading using integrated 2D/3D-mammography (8.2 per 1000 screens; 95% CI 6.5-10.2) or 2D synthetic/3D-mammography (8.4 per 1000 screens; 95% CI: 6.7-10.4) were significantly higher than CDR for double-reading of 2D-mammography (6.3 per 1000 screens; 95% CI: 4.8-8.1), P<0.001 both comparisons. FPR% for single-read 2D/3D-mammography (2.60%; 95% CI: 2.29-2.94), or single-read 2D synthetic/3D-mammography (2.76%; 95% CI: 2.45-3.11), were significantly lower than FPR% for double-read 2D-mammography (3.42%; 95% CI: 3.07-3.80), P<0.001 and P=0.002 respectively.


Single-reading of 3D-mammography (integrated 2D/3D or 2Dsynthetic/3D) detected more BC, and had lower FPR, compared to current practice of double-reading 2D-mammography alone - these findings have implications for population BC screening programs.


Breast cancer screening; Digital breast tomosynthesis; Mammography; Population screening; Screen-reading

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