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Use of computer-aided detection (CAD) tools in screening mammography: a multidisciplinary investigation

Alberdi, E., Povyakalo, A. A., Strigini, L. , Ayton, P., Hartswood, M., Procter, R. & Slack, R. (2005). Use of computer-aided detection (CAD) tools in screening mammography: a multidisciplinary investigation. British Journal of Radiology, 78(suppl_), S31-S40. doi: 10.1259/bjr/37646417


We summarise a set of analyses and studies conducted to assess the effects of the use of a computer-aided detection (CAD) tool in breast screening. We have used an interdisciplinary approach that combines: (a) statistical analyses inspired by reliability modelling in engineering; (b) experimental studies of decisions of mammography experts using the tool, interpreted in the light of human factors psychology; and (c) ethnographic observations of the use of the tool both in trial conditions and in everyday screening practice. Our investigations have shown patterns of human behaviour and effects of computer-based advice that would not have been revealed by a standard clinical trial approach. For example, we found that the negligible measured effect of CAD could be explained by a range of effects on experts' decisions, beneficial in some cases and detrimental in others. There is some evidence of the latter effects being due to the experts using the computer tool differently from the intentions of the developers. We integrate insights from the different pieces of evidence and highlight their implications for the design, evaluation and deployment of this sort of computer tool.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: Anthropology, Cultural, Breast Neoplasms, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Mammography, Mass Screening, Radiographic Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted, Technology Assessment, Biomedical
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer)
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
School of Science & Technology > Computer Science > Software Reliability
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