The Medipattern Corporation
TSX VENTURE : MKI

The Medipattern Corporation

September 09, 2005 09:00 ET

Medipattern's Breast Imaging Software B-CAD'TM' to be Introduced by Cedara Software as One of the Ground-Breaking Clinical Applications Showcased at Breast Imaging Conference 'BIC' in Orlando

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Sept. 9, 2005) -

Attention: Business/Financial Editors:

The Medipattern Corporation (TSX VENTURE:MKI), a leading developer of computer-aided detection (CAD) software applications for medical imaging, today announced the intention of Cedara Software Corporations (Cedara), a Merge Healthcare company (Nasdaq: MRGE; TSX:MRG) to showcase Medipattern's B-CAD among a variety of advanced clinical software solutions at the Breast Imaging Conference (BIC) held Sept 8-10 in Orlando, Florida.

"B-CAD's time-to-market is shortened with Cedara in the field marketing our product at these important conferences," said Jeff Collins, CEO of Medipattern. "These conferences bring together the most influential decision makers in the breast-imaging community and provide the opportunity for them to review clinical applications that will impact their practices today and in the future."

"A number of challenges are faced by healthcare professionals working in breast imaging today," said Sabrina Cannistraro, Product Manager for Women's Health at Cedara. "I think that specialists at BIC will be quite impressed by the comprehensive nature of our product offerings in this important clinical specialty. Cedara's suite of breast imaging solutions brings dedicated functionality, flexibility and ease-of-use to practitioners."

High demands for breast cancer screening and diagnosis mark one of the most significant challenges faced by practitioners. According to the American Cancer Society, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes in the United States. In 2004 alone, it is estimated that more than 200,000 new cases of non-invasive breast cancer were found. Today, levels of breast cancer incidence have risen from 1 in 20 in 1960 to the alarming level of 1 in 8.

Acknowledging the struggle to meet the demands related to this burgeoning disease, a recent study published by the Institute of Medicine indicates that there are not enough breast imaging specialists to keep up with current demand for screening mammograms in the United States.

"Technology can streamline workflow for healthcare professionals," stated Chris Barlow, Director of Business Development at Cedara Software. "From early detection to multi-modality review and efficient reporting, Cedara's solutions can have a real impact on increasing case loads in breast imaging."

Cedara will be showcasing Cedara I-ReadMammo™, a multi-modality breast imaging workstation, to attendees at the 2005 Breast Imaging Conference. Cedara I-ReadMammo presents a number of advantages over other clinically available products; from exceptional image quality, to integrated CAD support (Computer Assisted Detection) and mammo-specific functionality, Cedara I-ReadMammo has received consistently strong feedback from many of the leading women's health practitioners.

"I-ReadMammo incorporates many time-saving features that may seem small to people outside of the industry, but have a large impact on specialists who are expected to read in excess of 100 cases per day," added Cannistraro.

To eliminate time wasted switching between different proprietary workstations, Cedara I- ReadMammo allows users to view images from Full Field Digital Mammography (FFDM) machines manufactured by different vendors, as well as images from Ultrasound, MRI and other modalities; access to proprietary FFDM machines has historically marked a significant problem for institutions that have purchased mammography equipment from multiple vendors. Cedara I-ReadMammo allows physicians to more efficiently compare studies from different imaging devices for a complete diagnosis on a single workstation. Cedara I-ReadMammo also provides automated image display, presenting images in preferred layouts for different users and image types. Through synchronized navigation, the application allows users to zoom in on a region of interest and quickly analyze bilateral structures; masking, bright light and binocular tools simplify the transition from film to softcopy review. All of these characteristics have been designed to have a strong impact on reporting breast imaging cases.

Studies show that breast cancer diagnosis is the area for which radiologists are most litigated. As a result, physicians have seemingly increased biopsy dependency as added proof for potentially litigious situations. Another repercussion of breast imaging litigation has been a significant decrease in diagnostic confidence.

"A biopsy is a frightening and painful experience," emphasizes Cannistraro. "It is one thing for a woman to have a mammogram or an ultrasound examination. But when things are elevated to the level of biopsy, there's a tendency for a woman to believe that something malignant has been found. As statistics indicate, this is not always the case. Finding out that the biopsy could have been prevented, and that the procedure could make future imaging more difficult is very frustrating for the patient."

Today, statistics indicate that approximately 80% of breast biopsies have benign findings. Biopsies are invasive procedures that can be physically and emotionally traumatic for women. Furthermore, core biopsies can also lead to scar tissue, making future imaging difficult.

Representing many years of development by Medipattern, Cedara B-CAD, the world's first CAD solution, designed to assist radiologists in the analysis of breast lesions using ultrasound images, will also be showcased by Cedara. It is hoped that B-CAD will help improve diagnostic confidence as an additional analytical tool. B-CAD represents a strong shift for CAD applications, integrating a variety of unique features for breast ultrasound. B-CAD automatically analyzes, segments, and classifies shape and orientation characteristics of user-selected regions of interest (ROI) in breast ultrasound exams. Cedara B-CAD automatically generates a report using the ACR BI-RADS® Ultrasound Lexicon Classification Form, and helps physicians bring consistency, efficiency, and standardized reporting to breast ultrasound.

B-CAD was developed by The Medipattern Corporation and is being integrated by Cedara into its I-ReadMammo product. Medipattern is represented through Cedara's Technology Partnership Program. B-CAD was issued US FDA 510(k) clearance in May 2005 and is currently in use at several luminary sites across the United States.

Products demonstrated at BIC will be available for easy integration into existing Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS), as plug-ins and as standalone applications for healthcare professionals and Medical Imaging OEM organizations.

Cedara can be found at booth 14 during the Breast Imaging Conference.

About The Medipattern Corporation

The Medipattern Corporation develops computer-aided detection (CAD) software applications for medical imaging. Medipattern's core technology is a software platform designed to analyze and automate the processing of medical digital images. The Company's initial clinical application is CAD for breast ultrasound (B-CAD™). B-CAD uses pattern recognition technology to assist radiologists in their efforts to classify and characterize lesions in ultrasound images of the breast. For additional information, please visit the company's Web site at: www.medipattern.com.

About Cedara

Cedara is a Merge Healthcare company focused on the development of custom engineered software applications and development tools for the medical imaging OEM and International markets. Cedara software is deployed in hospitals and clinics worldwide and is licensed by many of the world's leading medical device and healthcare information technology companies. Cedara technologies and expertise span all the major digital imaging modalities including computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), digital X-ray, mammography, ultrasound, echo-cardiology, angiography, nuclear medicine, positron emission tomography (PET) and fluoroscopy. Cedara medical imaging offerings are used in all aspects of clinical imaging workflow including the capture of a patient's digital image; the archiving, communication and manipulation of digital images; sophisticated clinical applications to analyze digital images; and the use of imaging in minimally-invasive surgery. For additional information, visit our website at www.cedara.com.

About Merge Healthcare

Merge Healthcare is a market leader in the development and delivery of medical imaging and information management software and services. With over twenty years of leadership in the medical imaging and healthcare information technology markets, Merge Healthcare provides innovative solutions for both OEM and the end-user healthcare markets. We custom engineer clinical and imaging applications and development tools that are on the forefront of medicine and its use of medical imaging for OEM and international customers. We develop innovative medical imaging software solutions that support end-to-end business and clinical workflow for radiology department and specialty practices, imaging centers and hospitals. Our innovative software solutions use leading-edge imaging software technologies that accelerate market delivery for our OEM customers, while our end-user solutions improve our customers' productivity and enhance the quality of patient care they provide. For additional information, visit our website at www.merge.com.

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