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Women’s Imaging

Elevated Women’s Imaging Services

Women’s wellness is important and at Ft. Jesse Imaging & Gale Keeran Center for Women, our caring staff uses the latest technology to provide comprehensive care from screening to diagnostic breast exams and biopsies. In addition, every breast study performed at our locations is interpreted by sub-specialized breast radiologists. Their expertise and sole dedication to breast imaging means you can trust the results you receive.

We make it easy for you to maximize your personal health by providing same-day appointments and extended weekend options for breast health services.

 

3D Screening Mammography3D Diagnostic MammographyBreast UltrasoundBreast MRI
Ultrasound Guided Breast BiopsyBreast Density

What is Breast Density?

While dense breast tissue is perfectly normal – affecting approximately 40 percent of the population – breast density cannot be felt and it is not related to breast size or firmness. It can only be seen on a mammogram.

Breast tissue is considered dense if there is a lot of fibrous or glandular tissue and not much fat. Fibrous and glandular tissue looks white on a mammogram, as does a possible tumor. This makes it difficult to tell the difference between a tumor and dense breast tissue on a mammogram.

Women with dense breasts should consider additional screening exams such as ABUS or Abbreviated breast MRI.

What is a screening 3D mammography exam?

Mammography is specialized medical imaging that uses a low-dose x-ray system to see inside the breasts. It aids in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women.

Ft. Jesse Imaging & Gale Keeran Center for Women offers screening and diagnostic mammograms using state-of-the-art 3D mammography technology.

During a 3D mammogram multiple breast images are taken from different angles producing a series of one-millimeter thick slices that create a 3D image of the breast. This provides greater visibility for the radiologist to see breast detail, increasing the likelihood of spotting abnormalities and a greater confidence to rule out benign tumors as cancerous. In addition, 3D mammography finds cancers earlier than 2D mammography alone, with a 27% increase in cancer detection and a 40% increase in invasive cancer detection. The very low X-ray energy used for 3D mammography is below the FDA guidelines.

Up to 40% of women have dense breast tissue that makes detection of breast cancers more difficult. The mammography results will notify you if you have dense breast tissue. Women with dense breasts may want to consider an additional screening exam such as Automated Breast Ultrasound and/or Abbreviated Breast MRI.

What is Breast Ultrasound?

In certain cases, an ultrasound of the breast is performed in conjunction with diagnostic mammography. This exam is non-invasive and uses sound waves, rather than radiation, to produce images. The ultrasound technologist will move a wand coated in gel over the breast tissue to further examine areas of concern. The images produced can provide greater clarity in the evaluation of the breast tissue.

What is ABUS (Automated Breast Ultrasound)?

With 3D ultrasound volumes and ABUS software, radiologists can look through hundreds of breast tissue image “slices,” looking at layers of dense tissue to find breast cancers which may have been missed on a mammogram. This is different than routine ultrasound of the breasts since the images from ABUS allow you to see in projections that routine ultrasound cannot, which results in the ability of physicians to detect more breast cancers and less false negatives (findings due to images which are not cancer).

Other Facts about ABUS:

  • FDA-approved technology
  • Insurance does cover this exam, however it is not covered under preventative care at this time and may go toward a patient’s deductible.
  • ABUS does not replace a mammogram
  • ABUS is recommended for patients with strong family history or whose mammogram reported “extremely dense”, “heterogeneously dense”, and “moderately dense” breast tissue.

What is a diagnostic 3D mammography exam?

A diagnostic mammogram is performed on the same machine, and in the same manner as a screening mammogram. A diagnostic mammogram is performed on patients who have symptoms such as pain, itching, swelling, palpable lump, discharge, etc. A patient whose screening mammogram detects areas of concern will also have additional images performed as a diagnostic mammogram.
In many cases, a diagnostic mammogram may also be used in conjunction with ultrasound to provide greater clarity of the breast tissue.

What is a Breast Biopsy ?

A breast biopsy is performed to remove cells from a suspicious area and examine them under a microscope. This is done by the radiologist using a minimally invasive image-guided needle biopsy.

  • Ultrasound guided breast biopsy is performed by taking samples of an abnormality using ultrasound guidance.

 

What is an Abbreviated Breast MRI?

An Abbreviated Breast MRI is an MRI exam of the breasts taking targeted key sequences of images that required less time on the table than a traditional MRI. This exam will find breast cancers which cannot be found with mammography and/or ultrasound. Women with dense breasts can use this exam as an enhanced screening exam in conjunction with a screening mammogram. The abbreviated breast MRI exam is useful in all breast densities but most helpful in Heterogeneously & Extremely Dense Breasts.

Abbreviated Breast MRI is also recommended for the following:

  • Women with an INTERMEDIATE lifetime risk of developing breast cancer. It is NOT for women with a HIGH lifetime risk of developing breast cancer.
  • Women with implants to screen the breasts for cancer, not to assess implant integrity.
  • Women who have been previously treated for breast cancer, if at least 1 year out from treatment. Many women with a personal history of breast cancer are at INTERMEDIATE risk for a future breast cancer.

What is a Traditional Breast MRI?

A Traditional Breast MRI is an MRI exam of the breasts taking comprehensive images to screen for, diagnose, and monitor breast cancer. This exam may be used to assess extent of disease in a woman with a newly diagnosed breast cancer.

Abbreviated Breast MRI is also recommended for the following:

  • Recommended as a screening exam in women at HIGH lifetime risk of developing breast cancer. This includes women with a known genetic mutation, a history of radiation to the chest between the ages of 10 and 30, or a calculated lifetime risk of breast cancer greater than 20%.
  • Used to assess breast implant integrity.
  • May be recommended by the radiologist to assess an ongoing breast problem not identified with a mammogram and/or ultrasound.
  • In addition to breast exams, many women may also benefit from a screening bone density exam. Bone loss can be caused by inherent traits, lifestyle choices and by certain health conditions or medications that are taken. Learn more about bone density exams. (make this a link to bone density page).

What you should know

Answers to frequently asked questions.

The decision to have a mammogram is a personal one and is dependent upon age, family history, the density of breast tissue, and discussion with your physician. Ultimately – it’s your decision – you do not need a recommendation from a physician for a screening mammogram. In terms of age, research clearly shows that annual mammography and breast cancer screen should start at age 40 and it is strongly correlated with significant improvement in survival rates of breast cancer.

Some people experience discomfort or pain while getting a mammogram.

To make the exam less uncomfortable, you can try:

  • Scheduling the exam when breast tissue is least tender, about a week after your period
  • Avoiding caffeinated drinks
  • Applying skin numbing products

Make sure to tell the technician if you:

  • Are pregnant
  • Are breastfeeding
  • Have breast implants

Also, on the day of your exam:

  • Wear comfortable clothing so you can easily remove your shirt.
  • Describe any breast problems to the technician before the exam.

A mammogram can miss problems. It can also find things that look like cancer, but aren't. 3D Mammography can provide greater clarity in the images providing greater accuracy in detecting abnormalities and reducing the need for additional imaging or testing.

If we notice something on your mammogram, you may need more tests. An ultrasound or a breast biopsy can provide answers.

At Ft. Jesse Imaging & Gale Keeran Center for Women, we understand that the cost of an imaging exam can be a concern. Screening mammograms are usually covered by your insurance but if you are uninsured, we offer pricing that is substantially lower than the same exam performed at a hospital. We believe that price transparency is important so you can be prepared for your financial obligations, if any. To learn more about what your exam may cost, please click here.

The radiologist will review the Mammogram and provide a diagnostic report that will be sent directly to your provider. The report is typically available to your provider within 24-48 hours. Many providers plan scheduled time to discuss results with their patients so you could check with their office to see when they will be available to review the information with you.

To request a copy of your report, please click here

Prep for your exam

  • Please wear no deodorant, lotions, or powders.
  • Please wear an outfit with a separate top and bottom.

Forms

If you have any questions about your visit, please contact the imaging center at 309.454.5552.

Please review the following form before your visit.