Accuracy of mammography varies by facility


Reuters is reporting new research suggesting that the correct interpretation of mammography results varies between facilities. Moreover, there are characteristics that predict which facilities are likely to provide more accurate readings.

“The most surprising finding,” according to one of the researchers, “was that there were characteristics that did explain some of the differences” in the facilities. “This is good news because it means that facilities could begin to consider adopting characteristics associated with better performance.”

My Take? 

To be your own healthcare quarterback, you need information like this. And, in my mind, the most important factor associated with increased interpretive accuracy of the mammogram was “having a breast imaging specialist (at least 50 percent of time spent doing breast imaging) read the mammograms.”

As one of the researchers says, “The take-home message for practitioners would be to ask whether a radiologist is devoting a substantial amount of time to reading mammograms” as “The presence of a breast imaging specialist was associated with better performance.”


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