Women's Services Patient Resources
Despite your personal risk, 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. Thousands look to Women’s Diagnostic Center as their breast health resource for information and early detection.
The Benefits of Choosing a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence
The American College of Radiology designates a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence on several factors. A center must pass rigorous, though voluntary, breast imaging specifications. The ACR awards accreditation to facilities for the achievement of high standards after a peer review evaluation. Evaluations are conducted by board certified physicians and medical physicists who assess the qualifications of personnel and facility equipment.
Advantages of choosing a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence
- Unsurpassed Breast Diagnostic Services in Addition to Mammography
Achieving BICOE status puts a gold star not just on a center’s mammography but other services as well. Breast ultrasound, ultrasound-guided breast biopsy, and stereotactic breast biopsy are all accredited under the center of excellence designation.
- Enhanced Personnel Training
Physicians, technologists, radiologists, and physicists all require additional training and education in accredited services available through a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence. Enhanced training ensures that staff is proficient in the most recent breast imaging developments. It guarantees all physicians are board-certified and have particular expertise in breast imaging. They are not just people who wander in once a week or month, but rather people who deal with it primarily.”
- Increased Research Abilities
Physicians within BICOEs are able to peer review colleagues, leading to more dialogue and helpful discussion in breast imaging topics. Facilities that receive BICOE designation are able to participate in the National Mammography Database for free. The NMD uses data that radiology practices already collect under federal mandate to give comparative information and provide reports on benchmarking data such as cancer detection rates and recall rates. This is a huge benefit, as it allows BICOEs to assess their patient population better without any additional cost.
- Highly Reputable Standard of Care
Back in the 1950s, women with breast cancer had as high a risk of dying as people with lung cancer, but mammography and the science of breast imaging have cut the death rate and saved women’s lives by detecting breast problems earlier. Achieving Breast Imaging Center of Excellence status shows the level of commitment a center has to fighting breast disease, a social cause and movement that has grown significantly. It demonstrates that a facility is performing at a high level and doing as well as possible for the benefit of every patient.
Breast Tomosynthesis White Paper
Since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval of the first commercial systems in 2000, digital mammography has become an accepted standard of care in breast cancer screening and diagnosis and has paved the way for the newest groundbreaking technology in this arena – breast tomosynthesis (3D mammography). Breast tomosynthesis is a screening and diagnostic modality that acquires images of a breast at multiple angles during a short scan. The individual images are then reconstructed into a series of thin, high-resolution slices typically 1 mm thick, which can be displayed individually or in a dynamic ciné mode.
A tomosynthesis data set virtually eliminates detection challenges associated with overlapping structures in the breast, which is the primary drawback of conventional 2D analog and digital mammography. In addition, breast tomosynthesis offers other potential benefits including increased lesion and margin visibility, help in localizing structures in the breast, a reduction in recall rates, and increased cancer detection.
Breast tomosynthesis goes by a number of names in the radiology and general press. Digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT), 3D mammography, 3D breast tomosynthesis, 3D tomosynthesis, tomosynthesis, and Tomo are all used. In this paper, we will refer to the new technology as tomosynthesis or Tomo. Tomosynthesis has been available in Europe and other countries recognizing the CE mark since 2008. In February 2011, Hologic’s Selenia® Dimensions®
Steps to Your Breast Self-Exam
Breast self-exams are a tool meant to help you learn what is normal for you. The process includes looking at and feeling your breasts in order to notice any changes. We recommend you perform you breast self-exam while bathing in the shower or tub with soapy hands or lying in bed on your back with a pillow under your shoulders. Do it in a place that is most comfortable and effective for you. The important thing is that you do it.
If you feel any lumps or changes, call your doctor. Remember most lumps are not cancer. It’s not about finding cancer; it’s about knowing what is normal for your breasts. If something does not feel normal, call your doctor.
The best time to perform your breast self-checks is 6 days after your period or on the first of day of the month, if you no longer have periods.