A mammogram simply put is an X-ray of the breast. Research has shown that Mammograms are the best way to find breast cancer early. Routine yearly mammograms can detect and identify cancerous growths in their early stages which gives caregivers a valuable edge in this race against time to treat their patients in a timely fashion. A screening mammogram thus lowers the risk of dying from breast cancer. With the advances in technology mammogram imaging has come a long way since its inception. New software upgrades and better mammography equipment gives the Radiologists better tools to identify and spot trouble areas and report their findings with added confidence.
Here at Radiology Center at Harding we have a state of the art 3D Mammography equipment that takes breast cancer screening to a next and more advanced and accurate level. Whether it’s your annual screening mammogram or a diagnostic mammogram test ordered by your physician, we pride ourselves as one of the premiere outpatient radiology facilities in New Jersey that conducts mammography exams. We use industry gold standard Halogic Genius 3D technology to perform Mammograms at Radiology Center at Harding.
Mammograms can generally be divided into 2 categories.
- Screening Mammograms
- Diagnostic Mammograms
A screening mammogram as is evident from its name is used to preemptively look to detect for signs of breast cancer in high risk category individuals. A yearly Mammogram is generally recommended for women over the age of 40 or sooner if deemed necessary by their physicians if they have a family history of breast cancer. These yearly Mammograms help us stay ahead of the curve in our fight against breast cancer. These mammography exams diagnose any problems either before they arise or are in their early stages. During a Mammogram X-ray pictures of each breast are taken, typically from different angles. A radiologist then interprets these Mammogram results and sends their findings in a report to the caring physician of the patient.
Mammograms can also be used to look at a woman’s breast if her physician recommends one based on breast symptoms or if a change is detected during their routine screening exams that is in contrast with previous exams on a screening mammogram. When used in this way, they are called diagnostic mammograms. They may include extra views (images) of the breast focused on particular targeted area of increased interest that aren’t part of screening mammograms. Sometimes diagnostic mammograms are used to screen women who were treated for breast cancer in the past.
Three-dimensional (3D) mammograms:
For this newer type of mammograms performed routinely at Radiology Center at Harding, also known as breast tomosynthesis or digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT), each breast is compressed once, and a machine takes many low-dose x-rays as it moves in an arc over the breast. A computer then compiles these images into a series of thin slices like the pages in a stack of papers. This allows the radiologist to see the breast tissues more clearly in three dimensions. (A standard two-dimensional [2D] mammogram can be taken at the same time, or it can be reconstructed from the 3D mammogram images.)
Many studies have found that 3D mammography appears to lower the chance of being called back for follow-up diagnostic mammogram. It also statistically appears to help find more breast cancers. It is found to be a more effective Mammogram procedure in cases with women who have dense breasts.