FUJIFILM?s Aspire? HD Full Field Digital Mammography (FFDM) system recently received FDA 510(k) approval.

It arrived in October, just in time for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM). FUJIFILM Medical Systems USA Inc debuted its new Aspire™ HD Full Field Digital Mammography (FFDM) system. The FDA 510(k) cleared system provides image clarity that enables detail of potential abnormalities that not only assists in more accurate and reliable diagnoses, but also results in enhanced clinician productivity. The release of this system makes Fuji the only manufacturer to offer both DR and CR FFDM products.

Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women (after lung cancer), and NBCAM aims to promote breast cancer awareness, share information on the disease, and provide greater access to screening services. Fuji’s new FFDM system is positioned to advance the goals of diagnosing and treating the disease.

The Aspire HD system is equipped with Fuji’s direct-to-digital detector technology. The direct-conversion flat-panel detector is comprised of a dual layer of a-Se and employs Direct Optical Switching (DOS) technology instead of thin film transistors (TFTs) to directly capture the image signal more efficiently and with less noise.

“Direct Optical Switching increases the speed of image acquisition while reducing noise that can degrade image quality,” said David Hotchkiss, marketing director, modality solutions, FUJIFILM Medical Systems USA Inc. “Dose efficiency is also experienced with this patented technology. Current DR FFDM detectors use thin film transistors to read the image, creating electronic noise on the image and reducing sensitivity and image quality. By eliminating the need for TFTs and using DOS, noise no longer exists in the image and it allows for a 100% active pixel area. This means that we are utilizing the entire imaging area—or pixel—thereby increasing sensitivity and DQE while eliminating noise.”

By eliminating the TFTs, the DOS technology creates a direct image transfer that results in a higher efficiency image capture. This process produces images with less noise and the potential to reduce dose, while delivering the high performance and reliable digital mammography. The benefits of the direct image transfer are many.

“By utilizing our 50-micron detector, radiologists will be able to see highly detailed images and breast architecture will be more distinguishable,” said Hotchkiss. “Our new DR system improves workflow as well; images are acquired and displayed within 20 seconds.”

Other features of the system include a pixel pitch of 50 ?m, allowing for better viewing of fine detail and microcalcifications; a dual-layer amorphous-selenium, direct-to-digital detector, which provides high absorption efficiency and improved sharpness; high DQE for optimal signal-to-noise ratio for low dose; and a system design that incorporates precise positioning for technologists with improved comfort to the patient.

The system also utilizes the Aspire HD acquisition workstation (AWSd), which features a collection of innovative image processing algorithms developed through more than 75 years of clinical experience in medical imaging. Features of the AWSd include Fuji’s new dynamic visualization, which gives a total spectrum analysis of light and dark regions for highest contrast optimization; multiobjective frequency processing that selectively applies varying degrees of edge enhancement to individual structures, depending on size, improving visibility of dense and peripheral tissues; and flexible noise control, which suppresses noise without loss of diagnostic information or sharpness.

“Breast imaging facilities and their patients deserve the latest and most reliable technologies,” said Hotchkiss. “As we build on our proven technological foundation for mammography, Fujifilm will continue to provide exceptional image quality that will raise the bar for performance and reliability in breast screening.”