The objective of this study was to determine if digital luminescence mammography can be used as a diagnostic tool. We investigated twenty-two patients with mammographically suspicious findings using a conventional film-screen system and a digital phosphor storage plate in order to compare these two techniques. Four radiologists experienced in mammography reviewed each pair of images. Our results indicate that detectability of microcalcifications and solid masses with digital systems is superior to conventional film-screen mammography due to the increased contrast enhancement associated with digital systems. We did, however, find that characterization of morphological details is inferior with the digital system, presumably due to reduced spatial resolution. In addition, we found no statistically significant difference in the differentiation of benign from malignant lesions with both techniques. The accuracy of mammographic diagnosis was investigated in a receiver operating characteristic study and similar values were found with both techniques. Our results indicate that digital mammography will become an acceptable diagnostic tool although improvement, especially in spatial resolution, is desirable.
View details for PubMedID 9502757