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A radiologist's search pattern can directly influence patient management. A missed finding is a missed opportunity for intervention. Multiple studies have attempted to describe and quantify search patterns but have mainly focused on chest radiographs and chest CTs. Here, we describe and quantify the visual search patterns of 17 radiologists as they scroll through 6 CTs of the abdomen and pelvis. Search pattern tracings varied among individuals and remained relatively consistent per individual between cases. Attendings and trainees had similar eye metric statistics with respect to time to first fixation (TTFF), number of fixations in the region of interest (ROI), fixation duration in ROI, mean saccadic amplitude, or total number of fixations. Attendings had fewer numbers of fixations per second versus trainees (p < 0.001), suggesting efficiency due to expertise. In those cases that were accurately interpreted, TTFF was shorter (p = 0.04), the number of fixations per second and number of fixations in ROI were higher (p = 0.04, p = 0.02, respectively), and fixation duration in ROI was increased (p = 0.02). We subsequently categorized radiologists as "scanners" or "drillers" by both qualitative and quantitative methods and found no differences in accuracy with most radiologists being categorized as "drillers." This study describes visual search patterns of radiologists in interpretation of CTs of the abdomen and pelvis to better approach future endeavors in determining the effects of manipulations such as fatigue, interruptions, and computer-aided detection.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of digital imaging
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Descriptive anatomy based on three-dimensional imaging (IMAGING, THREE-DIMENSIONAL) of the body, organs, and structures using a series of computer multiplane sections, displayed by transverse, coronal, and sagittal analyses. It is essential to accurate interpretation by the radiologist of such techniques as ultrasonic diagnosis, MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING, and computed tomography (TOMOGRAPHY, X-RAY COMPUTED). (From Lane & Sharfaei, Modern Sectional Anatomy, 1992, Preface)
Three-dimensional computed tomographic imaging with the added dimension of time, to follow motion during imaging.
Misalignment of the visual axes of the eyes. In comitant strabismus the degree of ocular misalignment does not vary with the direction of gaze. In noncomitant strabismus the degree of misalignment varies depending on direction of gaze or which eye is fixating on the target. (Miller, Walsh & Hoyt's Clinical Neuro-Ophthalmology, 4th ed, p641)
Computed tomography where there is continuous X-ray exposure to the patient while being transported in a spiral or helical pattern through the beam of irradiation. This provides improved three-dimensional contrast and spatial resolution compared to conventional computed tomography, where data is obtained and computed from individual sequential exposures.
Two-dimensional separation and analysis of nucleotides.