Objective: To test the efficacy of self- compared to radiographer-led compression to reduce the average glandular dose without affecting image quality and compliance to follow-up mammography. Materials and methods: Women presenting for mammography for breast cancer follow-up, symptoms, opportunistic screening, or familial risk were asked to participate and, if willing, were randomized to self-compression or radiographer-led compression. Image quality was assessed blindly by two independent radiologists and two radiographers. Pain and discomfort were measured immediately after mammography and their recall was asked when the women participated in the follow-up mammogram, 1 or 2 years later. Results: In total, 495 women (mean age 57 years +/-14) were enrolled, 245 in the self-compression and 250 radiographer-compression arms. Image quality was similar in the two arms (radiologists’ judgement p = 0.90; radiographers’ judgement p = 0.32). A stronger compression force was reached in the self- than in the radiographer-arm (114.5 vs. 10.25 daN, p <.001), with a 1.7-mm reduction in thickness (p =.14), and almost no impact on dose per exam (1.90 vs. 1.93 mGy, p =.47). Moderate/severe discomfort was reported by 7.8% vs 9.6% (p =.77) and median pain score was 4.0 in both arms (p =.55). Median execution time was 1 min longer with self-compression (10.0 vs. 9.1 min, p < 0.001). No effect on subsequent mammography was detectable (p = 0.47). Conclusion: Self-compression achieved stronger compression of the breast, with comparable image quality, but did not substantially reduce glandular dose. The proportion of women who attended follow-up mammography was also similar in the two groups. Trial registration: clinicaltrials.gov NCT04009278 Key Points: • In mammography, appropriate compression is essential to obtain high image quality and reduce dose. Compression causes pain and discomfort. • Self-compression has been proposed to reach better compression and possibly increase participation in mammography. • In a randomized trial, self-compression reached stronger compression of the breast, with comparable image quality but with no glandular dose reduction or impact on participation in follow-up mammography.
Patient-centred care with self-compression mammography in clinical practice: a randomized trial compared to standard compression / Iotti, V.; Giorgi Rossi, P.; Canovi, L.; Guberti, M.; Nitrosi, A.; Lippolis, D. G.; Marchesi, V.; Besutti, G.; Ottone, M.; Vacondio, R.; Pattacini, P.. - In: EUROPEAN RADIOLOGY. - ISSN 0938-7994. - 33:1(2022), pp. 450-460. [10.1007/s00330-022-09002-z]