3D Mammography is an extraordinary breakthrough in cancer screening and detection. Our new breast tomosynthesis system, made by Hologic – a world leader in digital mammography, brings a new dimension to breast health by offering greater clarity and more certainty. This innovative new technology allows doctors to see breast tissue detail in a way never before possible to help find breast cancer at its earliest stages, when it is most treatable. When breast cancer is found early, the five-year survival rate is 98%. For more information, please review the Frequently Asked Questions below, click on the infographic at right, or call (360) 565-9003.
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to an interview with Tiffany Lambert, Program Supervisor of Women’s Imaging at Olympic Medical Center, as she discusses 3D mammography on the Todd Ortloff Show.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a 3D mammography breast exam?
3D mammography is a revolutionary new screening and diagnostic tool designed for early breast cancer detection that can be done in conjunction with a traditional 2D digital mammogram.
During the 3D part of the exam, the X-ray arm sweeps in a slight arc over the breast, taking multiple images. Then, a computer produces a 3D image of the breast tissue in one millimeter slices, providing greater visibility and detail for the radiologist. They can scroll through images of the entire breast like pages of a book.
The additional 3D images make it possible for a radiologist to gain a better understanding of the breast tissue during screening and the confidence to reduce the need for follow-up imaging.
Why is there a need for tomosynthesis breast exams? What are the benefits?
With conventional digital mammography, the radiologist is viewing all the complexities of the breast tissue in a one flat image. Sometimes breast tissue can overlap, giving the illusion of normal breast tissue looking like an abnormal area.
By looking at the breast tissue in one millimeter slices, the radiologist can provide a more confident assessment. In this way, 3D mammography finds cancers missed with conventional 2D mammography. It also means there is less chance your doctor will call you back later for a "second look,” because now they can see breast tissue more clearly.
What is the difference between a screening and diagnostic mammogram?
The American Cancer Society recommends annual screening mammograms for women beginning at age 40. Sometimes the radiologist may ask a screening mammogram patient to come back for follow-up images which is called a diagnostic mammogram to rule out an unclear area in the breast or if there is a breast complaint that needs to be evaluated.
What should I expect during the 3D mammography exam?
3D mammography complements standard 2D mammography and is performed at the same time with the same system. There is no additional compression required, and it only takes a few more seconds longer for each view.
Is there more radiation dose?
Very low X-ray energy is used during the exam, just about the same amount as a traditional mammogram done on film.
Who can have a 3D mammography exam?
It is approved for all women who would be undergoing a standard mammogram, in both the screening and diagnostic settings.
Call (360) 565-9003 to learn more and to schedule your 3D mammogram at one of our convenient locations in Sequim or Port Angeles.