RSNA this year in particular seems to feature a significant number of Women's Health products and sessions. I'd like to take today's post to highlight some of these products.
As I mentioned in Day One's post, an interesting study was presented on Sunday about the possibility of using ultrasound as a screening tool for breast cancer. This happens to coincide with GE Healthcare's recent acquisition of U-System and their somo v automated breast ultrasound (ABUS) system designed specifically as an adjunct to mammography as a means to screen for cancer in dense breast tissue. An issue with current mammography systems is the decrease in image quality as there is an increase in dense breast tissue. However, upwards of 40 to 45 percent of cancerous tissues are found in dense breast tissue. Ultrasound is more effective at imaging dense breast tissue and the ABUS system has generated a lot of interest from clinicians.
Dose concerns are another major issue being focused on at RSNA and Philips Healthcare has been prominent in showcasing its MicroDose mammography system at RSNA, through its acquisition from Sectra. The MicroDose has been available in the US since late last year, and Philips has used several Exhibitor Product Theatre (EPT) sessions to highlight the system. The concept revolves around counting individual X-ray photons, which reduces noise and other factors degrading information quality, therefore allowing for proportionally lower dosage to achieve similar results.
Siemens likewise is offering an upgrade called the MAMMOMAT Inspiration Prime Edition, which uses a special algorithm to identify scatter-causing structures and rectifies them through a software solution versus the hardware scatter grid that is currently in use. A scatter grid, the traditional approach, is placed between emitter and detector and absorbs scattered radiation during the digital mammography scan. The grid also absorbs radiation used for production of the image, however, and the dose must be increased to compensate. Without the need for a scatter grid, dose can be reduced.
There are plenty of other products to discuss at RSNA, but I?d never be finished writing if I covered them all. I?ll be doing a post-RSNA analyst call covering these products more in-depth, as well as other modalities being showcased at RSNA.