Comparison of Screen-film and Full-field Digital Mammography: Image Contrast and Lesion Characterization

Takayuki Yamada, Tadashi Ishibashi, Akihiro Sato, Mioko Saito, Haruo Saito, Toshio Matsuhashi, Shoki Takahashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This study compared screen-film mammography (SFM) with full-field digital mammography (FFDM) of the same patients. Materials and Methods: Twenty-four patients underwent surgery or biopsy, including 17 with carcinoma. Patients underwent both SFM and FFDM after providing informed consent. The abnormal findings consisted of 10 masses and 15 areas of microcalcification. The optical density of the breast tissue surrounding any lesion or mass was measured. Three readers evaluated the visibility of the masses and calcifications (contrast, margin, and type) by consensus from hard copies of the images. When evaluating FFDM, SFM was used as the standard of comparison. Results: FFDM showed greater contrast of mass than SFM. The contrast of mass on FFDM was judged visually superior or equivalent to that of SFM, and microcalcifications were the same in most cases. The margin of the mass was better defined by FFDM in two cases. Determination of the type of microcalcification was similar for SFM and FFDM. Conclusion: FFDM provided greater contrast than SFM. FFDM might be helpful for detecting masses and observing their margins. Although FFDM may be of some use for detecting calcification, it has no advantage when determining the type of calcification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-171
Number of pages6
JournalRadiation Medicine - Medical Imaging and Radiation Oncology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Jul


  • Full-field digital mammography (FFDM)
  • Image contrast
  • Screen-film mammography (SFM)


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