The physicians at Women’s Specialists of Plano are now offering a 3D mammogram, also known as a tomosynthesis, as a new breast cancer screening option for patients living in Dallas, Frisco, Plano, and surrounding communities. Breast cancer is the most diagnosed cancer in women, affecting one in every eight women in the United States. A 3D mammogram creates a complete three-dimensional image of the breast to provide a clearer picture than traditional mammograms. This advanced technology helps physicians better detect breast cancer at an earlier stage.
The goal of breast cancer screening is to identify breast abnormalities as early as possible to provide patients with more treatment options and a better chance for survival. A mammogram is a specific form of breast cancer screening that uses x-ray imaging to produce a picture of the breast. Traditional mammograms take twodimensional pictures of the breasts. A tomosynthesis image allows radiologists and physicians to examine breast tissue one thin layer at a time, ensuring that fine details are more visible and less likely to be hidden by overlapping tissue.
“The 3D mammogram allows physicians to better detect breast cancer at an earlier stage,” said Dr. Elizabeth Coronado. “This screening can be especially valuable for women receiving a baseline screening and for those who have dense breast tissue.”
From the patient’s point of view, a 3D mammogram feels very similar to a traditional breast cancer screening. A tomosynthesis is not painful, although some women may experience slight discomfort due to pressure just like with a traditional mammogram. The tube taking the x-ray sweeps across the breast in an arch and takes approximately four seconds to obtain an image, slightly longer than a traditional mammogram. A 3D screening produces more images, so it may take radiologists a little longer to read than a traditional mammography image.
The physicians at Women’s Specialists of Plano are pleased to bring this cutting-edge 3D technology to their patients. This new technology will help to detect more cancers at earlier stages. Even with these advances, women should follow the American Cancer Society’s guidelines recommending that women forty years and older receive a routine breast cancer screening mammogram every year.