Mammograms are an important tool in the early detection of breast cancer, and there are two main types: 2D and 3D (“D” stands for “dimensional”). Traditional 2D mammograms can be difficult to fully interpret, so they often lead to false positives and unnecessary biopsies.
3D mammography (also called tomosynthesis) uses more advanced technology – and is proving to be more accurate – than traditional 2D mammography. False positives or false negatives can have serious implications, and can seriously affect a woman’s health and sense of well-being.
Let’s talk about how a 3D mammogram works, and where you can go in The Bronx to get these clear and highly detailed results for diagnostic accuracy.
How Is a 3D Mammogram Done?
A 3D mammogram is an X-ray scan of the breast that uses low-dose radiation, just like a traditional mammogram. The procedure is the same, in that each breast is placed on a flat X-ray plate and compressed. You remain standing up for the procedure, and the scanner is at chest level.
However, 3D mammograms involve taking many images of each breast from different angles. The X-ray scanner moves in an arc over the breast in order to take these images, which is great for accuracy, because the pictures provide depth of the image. Compare this with a 2D mammogram, which only takes multiple flat images of the breast.
A computer will synthesize the images, combining hundreds of thin X-rays, like pages in a book. The result is a 3D image of the breast, which makes it easier for radiologists to see tumors – including the small ones that are difficult to identify, especially in dense breast tissue.
Is a 3D Mammogram Better than a Traditional Mammogram?
3D mammograms can help radiologists and other doctors, such as your gynecologist, to find breast cancer cells earlier than a traditional 2D mammogram because it offers a full view of the entire breast tissue. 2D mammograms are limited since the radiologist has only several flat images of the entire breast.
A 3D mammogram can therefore improve breast cancer detection, deliver fewer false positives (and false negatives), and prevent unnecessary biopsies. In clinical trials, 3D mammograms were found to be up to 53% more accurate than 2D mammograms and can detect 41% more invasive cancers than 2D mammograms.
Where Can I Get a 3D Mammogram?
3D mammograms require special equipment that not all hospitals or diagnostic centers have. If you are due for a mammogram soon, look for a facility that offers 3D mammograms.
3D Mammogram in The Bronx, NY
The medical staff at Starling Diagnostics is proud of our Women’s Specialty Health program, which includes state-of-the-art screening technologies such as 3D mammograms, DEXA bone scans, and ultrasound.
Our 3D mammogram scanner is here on-site for your convenience. We have on-site radiologists who can interpret your mammogram results and prepare them for your physician.
We also have a primary care physician on staff who is accepting new patients, if you are looking for a primary care provider. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, call our office today at (718) 319-1610 or fill out our convenient appointment request form online. We look forward to being your choice for primary care and diagnostic imaging technology!