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Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) 2016

Christina Roberts – Updated on March 10, 2021

The annual conference of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) has recently concluded in Chicago (November 27-December 2), with Volpara featuring in three talks and one poster presentation. Investigators from the Mayo Clinic have used Volpara and Quantra to validate their own automated density measurement LIBRA. Volpara showed superior performance to the other two softwares when it came to predicting breast cancer risk, displaying an odds ratio of 1.4 for each one standard deviation increase increase in Volpara percent density. The connection between Volpara and breast cancer risk was further supported by Battle and colleagues from the University of Arkansas, in their study of 5 746 women. Women in the top quartile of Volpara percent density and dense volume had a 120% and 190% risk respectively of developing breast cancer (compared to women with the lowest density).

From the medical physics aspect, Nico Karssenmeijer’s group showcased their work with Volpara pressure and cancer detection in the Dutch screening program. They showed that the best cancer detection occurred in the middle ranges of breast compression (between 9.2 and 10.7 kPa); overly low or high compression led to poorer detection and a higher rate of interval cancers. And finally, researchers from SigmaScreening in The Netherlands examined measuring breast contact area during mammographic compression. They compared two methods–the first was a “real time” measurement of contact area using transparent capacitive indium-tin-oxide foil attached to the paddle, while the second was the contact area reported by Volpara in the DI-COM tag. Both methods showed almost perfect correlation to the gold standard (manual measurement of contact area) and thus both are suitable to accurately calculate breast compression pressure.

It was an exciting experience and it was great to be a part of such diverse areas of research!