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Proceedings Paper

Modeling two levels of radiological skill: an example from breast cancer screening
Author(s): Regina Pauli; Sean M. Hammond
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Paper Abstract

Previous models of radiological skill have been primarily concerned with either visual search or with the interpretation of abnormality. In breast cancer screening both skills are important for the efficient assessment of screening mammograms. They can be accounted for in a double two-stage model of observer performance, incorporating detection and interpretation levels. Each consists of an analysis stage and a decision stage. The model is evaluated in terms of its ability to explain results from two training studies involving lay people learning to read mammograms. In the first study, a comparison of novice error rates with those of trainees with prior experience in mammography revealed that novices make more detection errors whereas interpretation errors are more frequent in experienced trainees. The observed differences support the notion that there are two separate stages of processing in mammogram interpretation. Accurate visual processing may be a developmental precursor of full interpretation. The second study demonstrates that even specific instruction on abnormal features in mammograms leads to improved recognition of normality in complete novices. This is predicted by the present model because true positives require a more complex processing route. The advantages of a process model which takes account of decision outcome for radiological skill are discussed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 April 1994
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 2166, Medical Imaging 1994: Image Perception, (1 April 1994); doi: 10.1117/12.171729
Show Author Affiliations
Regina Pauli, Univ. of Surrey (United Kingdom)
Sean M. Hammond, Univ. of Surrey (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2166:
Medical Imaging 1994: Image Perception
Harold L. Kundel, Editor(s)

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