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In Clinical and experimental medicine

Breast cancer was the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide, and early mammography screening could decrease the breast cancer mortality. Artificial intelligence (AI)-assisted diagnose system based on machine learning (ML) methods can help improve the screening accuracy and efficacy. This study aimed to systematically review and make a meta-analysis on the diagnostic accuracy of mammography diagnosis of breast cancer through various ML methods. Springer Link, Science Direct (Elsevier), IEEE Xplore, PubMed and Web of Science were searched for relevant studies published from January 2000 to September 2021. The study was registered with the PROSPERO International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (protocol no. CRD42021284227). A Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies-2 (QUADAS-2) was used to assess the included studies, and reporting was evaluated using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA). The pooled summary estimates for sensitivity, specificity, the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) for three ML methods (convolutional neural network [CNN], artificial neural network [ANN], support vector machine [SVM]) were calculated. A total of 32 studies with 23,804 images were included in the meta-analysis. The overall pooled estimate for sensitivity, specificity and AUC was 0.914 [95% CI 0.868-0.945], 0.916 [95% CI 0.873-0.945] and 0.945 for mammography diagnosis of breast cancer through three ML methods. The pooled sensitivity, specificity and AUC of CNN were 0.961 [95% CI 0.886-0.988], 0.950 [95% CI 0.924-0.967] and 0.974. The pooled sensitivity, specificity and AUC of ANN were 0.837 [95% CI 0.772-0.886], 0.894 [95% CI 0.764-0.957] and 0.881. The pooled sensitivity, specificity and AUC of SVM were 0.889 [95% CI 0.807-0.939], 0.843 [95% CI 0.724-0.916] and 0.913. Machine learning methods (especially CNN) show excellent performance in mammography diagnosis of breast cancer screening based on retrospective studies. More rigorous prospective studies are needed to evaluate the longitudinal performance of AI.

Liu Junjie, Lei Jiangjie, Ou Yuhang, Zhao Yilong, Tuo Xiaofeng, Zhang Baoming, Shen Mingwang


Breast cancer screening, Machine learning, Meta-analysis, Systematic review