Is film-screen mammography a technology of the past?
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Used correctly and regularly, studies have proven that screening is a key tool in the early detection of breast cancer. Early detection enhances a woman’s chances for survival.
Film-screen mammography has a deep heritage and long been the gold standard for breast cancer screening. While more than 77% of mammograms in the U.S. are captured digitally, many of the statistics about the benefits of mammography are from studies that used film.
Even with recent developments in other technologies, film-screen mammography remains a great tool for detecting breast cancer in its earliest stages. Plus, it offers practitioners a financially viable option for effective screening. Outside of the U.S., the numbers skew even greater for film-based mammography over other technologies.
Manufacturers such as Carestream—the world leader in breast imaging—continue to invest in the development of film-screen mammography through ongoing research and new product development like our New MIN-R 2000 Plus Film. Today’s products yield better resolution, greater contrast and finer details than ever before. We’re dedicated to further improving the capabilities of film-screen mammography as a screening and diagnostic tool.
Whatever technology you use—film-screen, computed radiography or full-field digital—the most important thing is to do it right. That means adhering to the manufacturer’s recommendations and following proper quality control procedures, ensuring that your system is within compliance, etc.
And keep in mind that the technology you choose for capture is only one part of the imaging chain. The technologist plays a key role in proper positioning, compression, and quality control. Likewise, the radiologist is critical in interpreting the results. It’s how you put it all together that you deliver the greatest benefit to your patients.
How long do you think film will have a place in early breast cancer detection?