Editor’s Note: Alternate Views
By Dave Yeager
Vol. 20 No. 8 P. 3
There are two sides (at least) to every story, as the saying goes, and that’s as true in medical imaging as in any other aspect of life. Depending on your view, you may think AI is on the verge of becoming ubiquitous or years away from making a significant contribution to radiology practice. The reality is probably somewhere in the middle, but it’s useful to take a closer look at how AI is changing clinical practice.
Our cover feature by Kathy Hardy looks at AI platforms. AI has been generating massive buzz in radiology for a while now, but there are practical concerns that need to be addressed. Chiefly, how will multiple AI algorithms be incorporated into workflow? Most radiologists don’t mind using AI as long as it doesn’t disrupt workflow, but having to stop what they’re doing to consult an app can quickly become burdensome. Clicks matter, and whoever figures out how to best harness AI without diverting radiologists’ attention will likely be poised to fill a large niche in the radiology market.
When it comes to alternate views colliding, nowhere are differences of opinion more hotly debated than in matters of breast screening. In case you haven’t heard, the American College of Physicians updated its breast screening recommendations this past April. The guidelines recommend that women 40 and older who are at average risk of breast cancer discuss screening and mammography with their doctors to weigh the potential benefits and risks. The guidelines go on to say that, in women aged 40 to 49, potential harms outweigh potential benefits. You can probably guess what happened next. Many in the breast screening community feel that the potential harms of breast screening are often exaggerated, and they point out that the studies the ACP based its recommendations on are older and may not have captured important data. Beth W. Orenstein provides an in-depth account of both sides’ arguments on page 16.
While we’re on the topic of decision making, you may have heard that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will require clinical decision support for advanced imaging, beginning in 2020. You probably also heard, at various times in the past, that it would be required beginning in 2018 and, before that, 2017. There’s no indication that CMS has plans to push the date again, but Dan Harvey caught up with some experts who can explain why it’s OK to stop worrying and learn to love CDS … as long as you don’t ignore it.
Finally, Keith Loria has a round-up of imaging displays. A picture is only as good as the medium it’s projected on, and several manufacturers are upping their game.
Enjoy the issue.