Skip to main content Accessibility help

“Target-absent” decisions in cancer nodule detection are more efficient than “target-present” decisions!

  • Trevor J. Crawford (a1), Damien Litchfield (a2) and Tim Donovan (a3)


Many parts of the medical image are never fixated when a radiologist searches for cancer nodules. Experts are able to use peripheral vision very efficiently. The size of the functional visual field appears to increase according to the level of expertise. However, searching a medical image diverges, in a puzzling way, from the typical search for a target feature in the laboratory.



Hide All
Charness, N., Reingold, E. M., Pomplun, M. & Stampe, D. M. (2001) The perceptual aspect of skilled performance in chess: Evidence from eye movements. Memory and Cognition 29:1146–52. Available at:
Donovan, T., Manning, D. J., Phillips, P. W., Higham, S. & Crawford, T. (2005) The effect of feedback on performance in a fracture detection task. SPIE 5749:7985. Available at:
Kundel, H. L., Nodine, C. F. & Toto, L. C. (1984) Eye movements and the detection of lung tumors in chest images. In: Theoretical and applied aspects of eye movement research, ed. Gale, A. G. & Johnson, F., pp. 297304. Elsevier. Available at:
Litchfield, D. & Donovan, T. (2016) Worth a quick look? Initial scene previews can guide eye movements as a function of domain-specific expertise but can also have unforeseen costs. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance 42(7):982–94. doi: 10.1037/xhp0000202.
Manning, D., Barker-Mill, S. C., Donovan, T. & Crawford, T. (2005) Time-dependent observer errors in pulmonary nodule Detection. The British Journal of Radiology 78:15. Available at:
Manning, D., Ethell, S., Donovan, T. & Crawford, T. (2006) How do radiologists do it? The influence of experience and training on searching for chest nodules. Radiography 12:134–42. Available at:
Rayner, K. (2009) Eye movements and attention in reading, scene perception, and visual search. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology 62:1457–506. Available at:
Reingold, E. M., Sheridan, H. (2011) Eye movements and visual expertise in chess and medicine. In: Oxford handbook on eye movements, ed. Gilchrist, I. D. & Everling, S., pp. 528–50. Oxford University Press.


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed