Blurred digital mammography images: An analysis of technical recall and observer detection performance

Wang Kei Ma, Rita Borgen, Judith Kelly, Sara Millington, Beverley Hilton, Rob Aspin, Carla Lança, Peter Hogg

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Abstract

Objective: Blurred images in full-field digital mammography are a problem in the UK Breast Screening Programme. Technical recalls may be due to blurring not being seen on lower resolution monitors used for review. This study assesses the visual detection of blurring on a 2.3-MP monitor and a 5-MP report grade monitor and proposes an observer standard for the visual detection of blurring on a 5-MP reporting grade monitor. Methods: 28 observers assessed 120 images for blurring; 20 images had no blurring present, whereas 100 images had blurring imposed through mathematical simulation at 0.2, 0.4, 0.6, 0.8 and 1.0mm levels of motion. Technical recall rate for both monitors and angular size at each level of motion were calculated. χ2 tests were used to test whether significant differences in blurring detection existed between 2.3- and 5-MP monitors. Results: The technical recall rate for 2.3- and 5-MP monitors are 20.3% and 9.1%, respectively. The angular size for 0.2- to 1-mm motion varied from 55 to 275 arc s. The minimum amount of motion for visual detection of blurring in this study is 0.4mm. For 0.2-mm simulated motion, there was no significant difference [χ2 (1, N=1095)51.61, p=0.20] in blurring detection between the 2.3- and 5-MP monitors. Conclusion: According to this study, monitors ≤2.3MP are not suitable for technical review of full-field digital mammography images for the detection of blur. Advances in knowledge: This research proposes the first observer standard for the visual detection of blurring.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20160271
JournalBritish Journal of Radiology
Volume90
Issue number1071
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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    Ma, W. K., Borgen, R., Kelly, J., Millington, S., Hilton, B., Aspin, R., ... Hogg, P. (2017). Blurred digital mammography images: An analysis of technical recall and observer detection performance. British Journal of Radiology, 90(1071), [20160271]. https://doi.org/10.1259/bjr.20160271