Summa Health has adopted 3D mammography for all mammograms. 3D mammograms are available at all of our imaging locations throughout Northeast Ohio.
How 3D Mammography Detects Cancer Earlier
3D mammography, also called tomosynthesis, allows physicians to examine breast tissue layer-by-layer, in multiple views and with fine details more visible, instead of viewing breast tissue using a conventional 2D flat image.
These exam views help physicians better distinguish invasive cancers, especially in women with dense breast tissue which can obscure views in a 2D mammogram. The result is earlier detection of potential breast cancers and fewer “call-backs” for false positives.
A 2D mammogram is similar to viewing the cover of a book while a 3D image shows each individual page.
Advanced technology allows 3D imaging to be performed along with a traditional 2D digital mammogram. This provides radiologists the ability to compare new 2D images to prior 2D images. During the 3D portion of the exam, the X-ray arm makes a quick four-second arc over the breast, taking dozens of images at various angles. These exceptionally sharp images are viewed individually and reconstructed.
In the 2D mammogram image (below, far left), there is a potential lesion in the breast. In the 3D tomosynthesis mammogram (5 images below on right), the physician can see that there is no lesion present.
Source: Hologic, Case- 2384798 Superimposed Parenchyma)
3D mammography is approved by the FDA for all women undergoing a screening mammogram and for follow-up exams. Multiple studies show that most women, regardless of breast type or density, benefit from 3D mammography versus 2D mammography alone. Patients may request a 3D exam or a 2D only exam. A physician referral is not needed for a 3D or 2D mammogram.
2D mammograms have been shown to miss 20 percent of early cancers, particularly in women with dense breast tissue. 3D mammography provides multiple views for more clarity, especially in dense breast tissue that may obscure views. Twenty states, including Ohio, now require mammography departments to notify patients if their results show dense breast tissue. If appropriate, patients can then seek additional images.
Women with dense breasts who get mammograms must be told of their higher risk for breast cancer, per regulations by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
3D mammography is approved by the FDA. Medicare and Medicaid healthcare plans cover the cost of 3D mammography. Some insurance companies may not yet reimburse for the 3D portion of the exam. Check with your provider.
Make your appointment for a digital mammogram at one of Summa’s convenient locations in northeast Ohio by calling 877.825.1974.
Schedule a breast screening at any one of our locations in the greater Akron area.
Call 234.312.5800 to schedule an appointment at these locations.