Three-dimensional digital tomosynthesis has revolutionized mammography and is now poised to spread to other applications, such as orthopaedics.
A third imaging modality poised for a breakthrough in 2016 is 3-D tomographic x-ray. Over the past five years or so, 3-d digital tomosynthesis has improved breast imaging, and in 2015 the technology was assigned a CPT code (Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) codes, the most widely accepted medical language used to report medical procedures).
“That solidified the reimbursement and business model on top of the great things it does on the imaging side,” says Frost & Sullivan's Nadim Daher. As a result, he expects this technology to be expanded into other applications such as orthopedics, where it can be used to take weight-bearing images. Carestream is one company that’s starting to talk about its R&D in that area, he adds.
Dr. Siroty-Smith explains why she's an advocate for a new machine that does Digital Breast Tomosynthesis - or in layman's terms - 3D imaging. It enables doctors to detect cancer earlier and more easily than the standard 2D imaging. "When we go to the Digital Breast Tomosynthesis or the 3D mammography, you can see this nodule here that really jumps out and it was very difficult to see on the standard view on this image," Dr. Siroty-Smith said. "And then, when we switched to the DBT and we get to that slice, again, it kind of jumps out at you and says, “Look, here I am."