Evaluation of a quadtree-based compression algorithm with digitized urograms

E. J. Halpern, J. H. Newhouse, E. S. Amis, H. M. Levy, H. W. Lubetsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The effect of a quadtree-based data-compression algorithm on the diagnostic yield in digitized radiographs was studied for 100 urograms. Each image was digitized and reviewed at nine decreasing compression ratios ranging from 90:1 to 4.2:1, followed by a review of the uncompressed digital images. Four radiologists independently reviewed the digitized images and the original radiographs and agreed on a reference standard of 201 findings. Sensitivity, measured by the number of findings noted on the compressed digital images, decreased with increasing compression ratios at and above the 11:1 level. No loss of sensitivity was noted with a compression ratio of 4.2:1. Sensitivity decreased more precipitously for calcifications than for soft-tissue masses. Only a minimal loss of sensitivity for bilateral renal function was noted, even with high compression ratios. False-positive rates were unaffected by compression. The authors conclude that quadtree compression ratios of 11:1 and higher may result in loss of sensitivity in clinically relevant findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-263
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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