Tests and Procedures
Computer-Aided Detection (CAD)
Computer-aided detection (CAD) is a recent advance in the field of breast imaging and is designed to improve radiologists' ability to find even the smallest breast cancers at their earliest stages.
CAD software uses sophisticated algorithms based on several thousand cases of breast cancer to identify suspicious areas on a mammogram that might warrant close examination.
How We Use CAD
The patient gets a digital mammogram in the usual way. There are no additional steps for patients to undergo.
Our radiologist reviews the mammogram without CAD analysis and makes a preliminary interpretation.
Once that initial review is done, we apply the CAD software to the mammogram. It highlights areas of potential concern and the radiologist takes another look at them. Because CAD is very sensitive and can detect very subtle abnormalities, it has proven to be particularly useful in mammography exams involving dense breast tissue, which is often present in pre-menopausal women.
With the CAD technology, the radiologist still reviews all aspects of the mammogram and makes the final interpretation. CAD cannot diagnose. It simply serves as a highly valuable double check. As has always been the case, the most important thing is not the technology, but the person reading the results.
When We Use CAD
All mammogram patients at the Highland Breast Imaging Center have their mammogram reviewed by CAD technology.