#366 – The Wire

  • Breast Imaging AI Growth: Signify Research expects the breast imaging AI market to maintain a 22% CAGR through 2025 when it will reach $205m (vs. $60m in 2020), driven by efforts to overcome screening backlogs, ongoing DBT system adoption, and increasing interest in breast ultrasound AI. The U.S. will likely maintain its dominant share of the global breast imaging AI market (80% in 2020) until European countries grow more comfortable with using AI as a second reader and major Asian countries launch national breast cancer screening programs.
  • Low-Field MRI Warning: A new JACR editorial from Yale radiologist, Jeffrey Weinreb, MD, warned that if radiologists don’t proactively embrace low-field MRI technology the specialty “will be in trouble.” The MRI expert argued that low-field MRI is here to stay and could disrupt key exam workflows and physician relationships, making radiologists’ early-stage influence even more important.
  • Feedback’s Funding: UK-based imaging workflow company Feedback PLC issued $14.6m worth of shares, revealing plans to use its new funds to support commercialization efforts and further develop its CareLocker product (cloud storage) and Bleepa platform (image sharing/communication).
  • Radiation Oncology’s Significant Incidentals: A new study out of Creighton University warned of “significant” incidental findings in radiation treatment planning CT scans, encouraging radiation oncology teams to formalize how they spot and follow-up on these findings (including referring them to radiology). The researchers had a radiation oncologist review treatment planning CTs from 115 patients, identifying four abnormal findings that were unrelated to the patients’ primary cancers (3 neoplasms, 1 benign) and could have been missed during the treatment planning process.
  • Ricoh Brings 3D On-Site: Ricoh USA and Stratasys announced a new alliance that will allow healthcare providers to print anatomical 3D models on-site. Hospitals and clinics would use the RICOH 3D for Healthcare solution (integrated with IBM iConnect Access) to design patient-specific anatomic models that would be produced on-site by Ricoh’s managed service staff using Stratasys’ 3D printers. Ricoh announced a related 3D model ordering/delivery service in late August.
  • POCUS’ DDH Advantages: A new study out of NYU Langone showed that using point-of-care ultrasound to assess infants with developmental hip dysplasia (DDH) significantly reduces patients’ visit duration and costs compared to formal sonographic evaluations. Their analysis of 532 DDH visits at a specialty orthopedic hospital (326 w/ POCUS, 206 w/ ultrasound) found that POCUS-based encounters lasted an average of 42 minutes (vs. 92min) and cost an average of $121 (vs. $339).
  • A Portable X-Ray Accident: A 72-year-old North Carolina man was awarded $175k from WakeMed Health after he was struck and injured by a portable X-ray system as it was wheeled down an ED hallway. The plaintiff’s lawyers argued that WakeMed was negligent because the 5’2” technologist couldn’t see around the 6’ X-ray system and the device didn’t feature any warnings (e.g. flashing lights). This seems like a rare accident, and the settlement was far lower than the plaintiff originally sought, but it’s easy to see how hospitals and RTs might appreciate being able to see around their portable X-rays.
  • A Case for Online Scheduling: A new study out of Denmark found that the majority of cancer patients and their relatives (n = 555 & 115) want to use online scheduling systems to book their outpatient CT imaging exams (54% & 65%), while fewer were interested in reserving specific radiographers (37% & 56%). This is far from the first study supporting online scheduling, which is a patient-friendly option that’s already widely adopted in many regions, but not in Danish oncology pathways.
  • CMS Hikes LDCT Rates: CMS revealed plans to increase Medicare reimbursements for outpatient low-dose CT lung cancer screening by 37% in 2022 ($81 to $111), drawing praise from the ACR after several years of lobbying efforts. This is especially good news for imaging centers considering that the USPSTF’s new guidelines doubled the US’ eligible lung cancer screening population, although the impact of both moves will still depend on getting more eligible people to participate in screening.
  • More DBT+SM Evidence: A new study review in European Radiology added to the growing field of evidence supporting DBT plus synthetic mammography (DBT+SM), finding that DBT+SM is more effective than digital mammography (DM), in addition to exposing women to less radiation than DBT+DM (SM doesn’t require additional DM scan). Their analysis of 12 papers comparing DBT+SM with DM screenings (414k women, 10 populations) found that DBT+SM produced a higher cancer detection rate (1.35 risk ratio) and a lower recall rate (0.79 risk ratio), although their biopsy rates were similar.
  • MRI Diabetes AI: A team of Swiss and German researchers developed a DL model that was able to identify patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) using only whole-body MRI exams. The researchers used the DL model to analyze 2,371 whole-body T1 MRI exams, achieving an 87% AUC for distinguishing T2D and an 68% AUC for prediabetes, both of which were more accurate than conventional detection models.

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-- The Imaging Wire team