According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, “About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12.4 percent) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. In 2018, an estimated 266,120 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in the U.S., along with 63,960 new cases of non-invasive breast cancer.”
Morgan Memorial Hospital is encouraging women to stay on top of their health by taking advantage of the hospital’s state-of-the-art mammogram machine to scan for breast cancer.
“We are extremely fortunate to have this equipment here in Madison,” said Dr. Josh Blackmon, radiologist at Morgan Memorial. “The technology is a breakthrough in the early detection of breast cancer which is critical in increasing the survival rate amongst breast cancer patients.”
“Our mammography machine is 3D, which is the most modern on the market today,” said Megan Morris, director of community and public relations.
According to Morgan Memorial, the 3D technology greatly increases accuracy when compared to 2D, detecting more invasive cancers earlier and reducing false alarms. “In a 2D mammogram all of the breast tissue is included in one image. This sometimes produces unclear results, particularly in women with dense breast tissue. With a 3D system the breast is imaged in layers, allowing a better image of the breast interior and improving the chances of early detection,” explained Morris.
Morgan Memorial is now offering weekend and evening appointments for mammograms.
“This is an added convenience for those who may not be able to fit a weekday appointment into their schedules,” said Morris. “We offer same-day results with a radiologist on-site for patients who are brought back for a diagnostic mammogram. A physician’s order is required for mammograms so that staff will know where to send results. In addition to 3D breast imaging, we provide breast ultrasound, ultrasound guided breast biopsy, and bone densitometry. Patients having their mammogram done in October receive a special gift in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness month.”
According to Morgan Memorial, Medicare and the majority of private insurers now cover 3D mammography. Patients whose insurance doesn’t yet cover 3D still have access to 2D or may elect to pay a $30 fee to upgrade to 3D.
“We have had great feedback over the past year when offering this service to our patients,” said Imaging Department Manager Kaye Utley. “The difference in images is remarkable and gives us added confidence that we aren’t bringing patients back for additional views unnecessarily.”