Quality control for digital mammography in the ACRIN DMIST trial: Part I

Aili K. Bloomquist, Martin J. Yaffe, Etta D. Pisano, R. Edward Hendrick, Gordon E. Mawdsley, Stewart Bright, Sam Z. Shen, Mahadevappa Mahesh, Edward L. Nickoloff, Richard C. Fleischman, Mark B. Williams, Andrew D.A. Maidment, Daniel J. Beideck, Joseph Och, J. A. Seibert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations


The Digital Mammography Imaging Screening Trial, conducted by the American College of Radiology Imaging Network, is a clinical trial designed to compare the accuracy of full-field digital mammography (FFDM) versus screen-film mammography in a screening population. Five FFDM systems from four manufacturers (Fischer, Fuji, General Electric, and Lorad) were employed in the study at 35 clinical sites. A core physics team devised and implemented tests to evaluate these systems. A detailed description of physics and quality control tests is presented, including estimates of: mean glandular dose, modulation transfer function (MTF), 2D noise power spectra, and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). The mean glandular doses for the standard breast ranged from 0.79 to 2.98 mGy, with 1.62 mGy being the average across all units and machine types. For the five systems evaluated, the MTF dropped to 50% at markedly different percentages (22% to 87%) of the Nyquist limit, indicating that factors other than detector element (del) size have an important effect on spatial resolution. Noise power spectra and SNR were measured; however, we found that it was difficult to standardize and compare these between units. For each machine type, the performance as measured by the tests was very consistent, and no predictive benefit was seen for many of the tests during the 2-year period of the trial. It was found that, after verification of proper operation during acceptance testing, if systems failed they generally did so suddenly rather than through gradual deterioration of performance. Because of the relatively short duration of this study further, investigation of the long-term failure characteristics of these systems is advisable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)719-736
Number of pages18
JournalMedical physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2006


  • Digital mammography
  • Image quality
  • Quality control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Quality control for digital mammography in the ACRIN DMIST trial: Part I'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this