Mammographic interpretation is ultimately a medical art. Understandably, there is wide variation in approach and clinical bias. There seems to be a general consensus, however, that it is a two-stage process consisting of:
(1) A global scan of the image to get an overall impression, involving image perception.
(2) A systematic, detailed, and careful scrutiny of the image for signs of abnormality, involving image analysis.
Radiologists instinctively perform a quality assurance exercise during the first stage, assessing a mammogram both for adequacy and image quality. These two aspects are intertwined and it helps to be clear about them.
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