By Dr. Karen Cortellino MD
3D Mammography-Tomosynthesis is a new mammogram technology that gives every woman her best chance for an early and accurate diagnosis. It uses high-powered computing to convert digital breast images into a stack of very thin layers or “slices” – building what is essentially a “3-dimensional mammogram”. 3D Mammogram is just like the 2D experience. The breast is compressed under a paddle as images are taken of the breast.
Unlike 2D Mammogram (regular mammograms), during the 3D Mammography-Tomosynthesis, the X-ray arm moves in a 50-degree arc around the breast, taking 25 images of entire breast in just seconds. Those images are sent to a computer and assembled into a three-dimensional picture of the breast. It allows specialized Radiologists to see through layers of tissue and examine areas of concern from all angles.
What are the Benefits of a 3D Mammography?
By minimizing the impact of overlapping breast tissue, small breast cancers that may be hidden during standard mammography, can be detected. 52-76% of cancers are missed in dense breast tissue Better accuracy of size, shape and location of abnormalities Fewer call backs due to reduced false alarms, unnecessary biopsies or additional tests, and less anxiety for patients Greater detection of multiple breast tumors, which occur in 15% of breast cancer patients Clear three-dimensional images of dense breast tissue 20% more information is available for Radiologists to see through fiber breast tissue.
What are the risks and limitations of 3-D Tomosynthesis?
Most importantly the procedure only results in a little bit more radiation than a standard mammogram because women who get 3-D imaging still undergo traditional 2-D mammography, as well. But more often than not the exam may help her avoid the radiation from additional diagnostic imaging.
At PINK Breast Center, we offer 3D Mammography-Tomosynthesis because we believe it offers the Doctor a better view of the breast tissue than the standard 2D Mammography alone, and gives every woman her best chance for an early and accurate diagnosis. While many insurances do cover 3D Tomosythesis imaging, because it is a new technology, some of the insurance companies may not cover the exams and may require patients to pay out of pocket. Because we believe it is a valuable part of an exam, should you have an out of pocket expense, at PINK Breast Center the most you would pay is the Medicare cost of $65.00.
Call PINK today for more information and to schedule your appointment. We have 2 convenient Women’s Diagnostic Centers in NJ.
Paterson: 680 Broadway suite 111, 07514 Phone number: 973-977-6662
Flemington: 3 Walter E Foran Blvd, Suite 312, 08822 Phone number: 908-284-2300