Today we will explore the latest radiology trends highlighting the value of contrast-enhanced mammography as an alternative to MRI for breast cancer screening and the potential of portable MRI systems to improve healthcare accessibility. Let’s delve into these and other interesting reads.
📖 Author: Sandra Dietrich | OpenRad team
One of the current radiology trends: Advancing breast cancer screening with contrast-enhanced mammography
As stated on healthcare-in-europe.com, the European Council’s 2022 recommendation for breast cancer screening has recognised the advantages of digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) and the use of breast MRI for supplemental imaging.
However, there are limitations to MRI, leading to the emergence of contrast-enhanced mammography (CEM) as a new option.
CEM utilises the same contrast agent as CT to identify lesions in breast tissue, providing physiological data in addition to standard images for diagnosis.
With CEM’s ability to streamline the breast cancer journey by offering fast imaging without compromising image quality, it presents a valuable alternative to MRI for women with dense breast tissue.
Advancements in medical imaging: The potential of portable MRI
According to Healthcare in Europe, researchers of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) highlight the potential of portable MRI systems which are smaller, less expensive, and have lower-strength magnetic fields compared to conventional MRI machines.
These portable MRI systems could expand healthcare delivery, making MRI more widely available in ambulances, mobile settings, underserved communities, and developing nations.
However, to unlock their full potential, further research is needed to understand the relationship between low-field images and the underlying tissue properties they represent.
NIST is actively working to advance low-field MRI technology and explore the use of magnetic contrast agents, particularly iron oxide nanoparticles, to enhance image quality in low-field MRI scans.
Further radiology trends: High-accuracy AI enhances lung cancer detection on chest X-rays
A study published in Radiology, the journal of the Radiological Society of North America, shows that a high-accuracy artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm significantly improves radiologist performance in detecting lung cancers on chest X-rays.
The research, conducted by Seoul National University, involved thirty readers, including experienced thoracic radiologists and radiology residents, who assessed chest X-rays with and without AI assistance.
The results indicate that human acceptance of AI suggestions increases when the AI’s diagnostic performance matches or surpasses that of human readers.
Clinically appropriate use of AI necessitates both the development of high-performance AI models and consideration of the specific clinical context in which the AI will be applied.
Optimising radiology: Value-based care for better outcomes
An article published in the European Medical Journal Radiology discusses the need for value-based radiology. Value-based radiology aims to measure and optimise the value delivered to patients and society by medical interventions.
The concept involves moving away from resourcing based solely on the volume of care delivered to a system that reflects the value provided to patients.
Radiologists play a crucial role in enhancing value by improving communication with patients, engaging with referring doctors, justifying imaging requests, and ensuring appropriate resource allocation.
By focusing on value creation, radiology can positively impact patient outcomes and contribute to a more efficient healthcare system.
Are there any radiology trends you would like to add here? Share your ideas or links to news articles via the comment section below.
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