Digital synthesis of lung nodules.
Studies evaluating observer accuracy and visual perception of pulmonary nodules usually are based upon test films obtained from clinical practice in patients with proven pulmonary nodules. Unfortunately, such nodules do not always occur in the optimal size and location to facilitate testing. Such studies would be enhanced by the ability to place nodules of desired size and location on chest radiographs. This report describes a method of placing a computer-generated (synthesized) nodule on a digitized chest radiograph. To demonstrate the similarity of these synthesized nodules to real nodules, each digitized radiograph with a computer-generated nodule was paired with a digitized chest radiograph of a patient with a clinically proven pulmonary nodule. A total of 22 pairs of chest radiographs were then shown to 13 radiologists, who were asked to distinguish the synthesized nodule from the real nodule. With this two alternative forced-choice test, the radiologists were only able to distinguish the synthesized nodule in 51% of the cases, strongly suggesting that computer generated nodules may be used to simulate real pulmonary nodules in future tests of nodule detection.
Sherrier, RH; Johnson, GA; Suddarth, SA; Chiles, C; Hulka, C; Ravin, CE
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