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USE OF GLANDULARITY AND THICKNESS MAPS IN TRIPLE ENERGY CONTRAST ENHANCED MAMMOGRAPHY

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000191458D
Publication Date: 2010-Jan-05
Document File: 6 page(s) / 43K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

The invention provides a technique for simultaneous generation of thickness and glandularity maps in addition to the contrast medium-equivalent image by using triple energy imaging. Further, the invention generates calcification-equivalent image with the contrast medium-equivalent image by using the triple energy imaging when both contrast medium and calcifications are present in the breast.

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USE OF GLANDULARITY AND THICKNESS MAPS IN TRIPLE ENERGY CONTRAST ENHANCED MAMMOGRAPHY

FIELD OF INVENTION

The invention generally relates to breast cancer monitoring systems and more particularly to a triple energy contrast enhanced mammography.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The possibility of developing an invasive breast cancer during a woman's lifetime is about 13%. As a result, new imaging tools and techniques are developed for the detection and diagnosis of breast diseases. A low dose x-ray system to examine breasts (mammography) is useful in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women. Triple energy contrast enhanced digital mammography (Triple energy CEDM) is one of a newly emerged imaging technique. The triple energy CEDM produces a recombined image that demonstrates the areas of contrast enhancement while suppressing the anatomical noise due to the contrast of normal fibro glandular and adipose tissues in the breast. The recombined image produced from the triple energy CEDM is a result of combined images which are obtained with different spectra (energy levels), after an intravenous injection of contrast medium (for e.g. iodine) to the patient.

Therefore, areas of contrast enhancement and especially of tumour angiogenesis are highlighted in the recombined image. Further, an excellent visibility can be achieved in all regions even near the breast border where the thickness varies significantly. The resulted recombined image is also called as contrast medium-equivalentimage.

However, the contrast medium-equivalentimage is derived without any prior information on breast thickness. Further, the triple energy CEDM is unable to generate images of

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breast thickness or glandularity. Whereas, breastdensity and the percentage of glandular breast tissue, has been identifiedas important factors for detecting the risk of breast cancer development. Further, visualizing both the contrast medium and the calcifications is not achievable with triple energy imaging. Moreover, physicians and/or surgeons require more refined and comprehensive information before making treatment decisions for their patients.

Hence there exists a need for developing a technique that provides refined and comprehensive information of the imaged subject for the easy detection and diagnosis of breast diseases.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The invention provides a technique for simultaneous generation of the thickness and glandularity maps in addition to the contrast medium-equivalent image. The technique described herein provides the information about glandularity and the breast volume and makes use of both of them for clinical information. Further, the invention also provides the substantial information for certain post processing methods that aim to enhance the quality of the images. In addition, it generates both the calcification-equivalent and contrast medium-equivalent images.

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