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Proceedings Paper

Threshold contrast visibility of microcalcifications in digital mammography
Author(s): Ann-Katherine G. Carton; Hilde Bosmans; Dirk Vandenbroucke; Chantal Van Ongeval; Geert Souverijns; Frank Rogge; Guy Marchal
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Paper Abstract

The purpose of this study is to describe a method that allows the calculation of a contrast-detail curve for a particular system configuration using simulated micro calcifications into clinical mammograms. We made use of simulated templates of micro calcifications and adjusted their x-ray transmission coefficients and resolution to the properties of the mammographic system under consideration (4). We expressed the thickness of the simulated micro calcifications in terms of Al equivalence. In a first step we validated that the thickness of very small Al particles with well known size and thickness can be calculated from their x-ray transmission characteristics at a particular X-ray beam energy. Then, micro calcifications with equivalent diameters in the plane of the detector ranging from 300 to 800 μm and thicknesses, expressed in Al equivalent, covering 77 to 800 μm were simulated into the raw data of real clinical images. The procedure was tested on 2 system configurations: the GE Senographe 2000 D and the Se based Agfa Embrace DM1000 system. We adapted the X-ray transmissions and spatial characteristics of the simulated micro calcifications such that the same physical micro calcification could be simulated into images with the specific exposure parameters (Senographe 2000D: 28 kVp-Rh/Rh, Embrace DM1000: 28 kVp-Mo/Rh), compressed breast thickness (42+/-5mm) and detector under consideration. After processing and printing, 3 observers scored the visibility of the micro calcifications. We derived contrast-detail curves. This psychophysical method allows to summarize the performance of a digital mammography detector including processing and visualization.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 May 2004
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 5368, Medical Imaging 2004: Physics of Medical Imaging, (6 May 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.536298
Show Author Affiliations
Ann-Katherine G. Carton, Univ. Hospitals Leuven (Belgium)
Hilde Bosmans, Univ. Hospitals Leuven (Belgium)
Dirk Vandenbroucke, Agfa-Gevaert NV (Belgium)
Chantal Van Ongeval, Univ. Hospitals Leuven (Belgium)
Geert Souverijns, Univ. Hospitals Leuven (Belgium)
Frank Rogge, Univ. Hospitals Leuven (Belgium)
Guy Marchal, Univ. Hospitals Leuven (Belgium)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5368:
Medical Imaging 2004: Physics of Medical Imaging
Martin J. Yaffe; Michael J. Flynn, Editor(s)

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