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Contact: Linda J. Johnson
WCA Hospital Public Relations & Marketing Department
(716) 664-8614
Linda.Johnson@wcahospital.org

WCA Introduces A New Era In Breast Imaging, 3D Mammography


WCA Hospital
From left, reviewing a Breast Tomosynthesis image are staff mammographers at The Center For Imaging At WCA, Crystal Schwab, R.T. (R) (M); and Eileen Bertrando, R.T. (R) (M), (in burgundy uniform).

Jamestown, New York (Tuesday, December 21, 2015)—WCA is excited to be the first hospital in the region to offer the latest in breast cancer screening advances,  the Genius™ 3D MAMMOGRAPHY™ or Breast Tomosynthesis exams, developed  by Hologic, Inc., a worldwide leader in Women’s Health.   The new system is recommended for women of all ages and breast densities.

Breast tomosynthesis is the latest breakthrough technology that has shown to find more invasive cancers than traditional 2D mammography, according to the Journal of the American Medical Association.  The Hologic system is the only clinically superior breast tomosynthesis system as approved by the FDA. The system allows our radiologists to more effectively pinpoint the size, shape and location of abnormalities.

“We are committed to the fight against breast cancer,” said Betsy T. Wright, FACHE, WCA Hospital President/CEO.  “While a myriad of forces are changing the face of health care, advances in technology are giving physicians and clinicians the tools to transform our approach to health from chronic disease management to prevention and early detection.  This change will save lives, reduce health care costs, and enable our residents to lead longer, healthier lives.  Through our supportive friends of LINKS Charity who raised more than $300,000 toward the purchase of our new 3D mammography technology, our hospital is the first in our region to provide patients the most effective imaging tool that leads to early detection and greater peace of mind.  We are truly indebted to LINKS and all of our community supporters who partner in our mission to provide high-quality care, right here where we work and enjoy our lives.”

Breast tomosynthesis includes both 2D images and tomosynthesis scans. During the tomosynthesis-DIMENSIONAL portion of the exam, an X-ray arm sweeps in a slight arc over the breast, taking multiple images. A computer then converts the images into a stack of thin layers, allowing the radiologist to review the breast tissue one layer at a time. A 3D mammogram exam requires no additional compression and takes just a few seconds longer than a conventional 2D breast cancer screening exam.

Benefits of breast tomosynthesis include:
•             Earlier detection of small breast cancers that may be hidden during digital mammography.
•             Fewer unnecessary additional tests.
•             Greater likelihood of detecting multiple breast tumors.
•             Clearer images of dense breast tissue.

Lyndon Gritters, MD, board-certified radiologist on the medical staff of WCA Hospital, says breast tomosynthesis is one of the most promising new diagnostic tools in detecting breast cancer early when it is most curable.  “One in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer over the course of her lifetime,” said Dr. Gritters.  “Our new technology is shown to improve breast cancer detection rates.  When cancers are found earlier, it increases the chances of survival.  The new technology is performed with digital mammography using the same scanner.  Breast tomosynthesis takes multiple images of the entire breast and allows my colleagues, who are experts in detecting breast lesions through the use of mammography, to see through the layers of breast tissue and examine the areas of concern from all angles.  Our new technology complements our existing full-field digital mammography unit at WCA, donated by our friends of LINKS Charity. Currently, there are approximately 2,000 breast tomosynthesis units in the United States.  Through the generous people who support LINKS, we are very fortunate to bring the newest and most revolutionary breast screening technologies to patients.”

To schedule your mammogram or have questions about this important breast health procedure, please contact the Mammography team at The Center For Imaging At WCA, at (716) 664-8448.  To learn all of the ways WCA cares for you, go to wcahospital.org.

Breast tomosynthesis or 3D mammography is the newest in a comprehensive array of breast health services available at the Center For Imaging & Medical Arts at WCA—designated a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology’s Commission on Breast Imaging.  Other services at the complex include same day mammogram screening; breast MRI imaging and MRI-guided biopsy, breast and general ultrasound, PET/CT Imaging, MRI imaging, bone densitometry (DEXA) screening, screening, diagnostic mammography, stereotactic and ultrasound-guided breast biopsy, patient navigation, and a conveniently located outpatient laboratory adjacent from the Mammography Suite.

About Genius™ 3D MAMMOGRAPHY™ Exams
The breast is a three-dimensional object composed of different structures located at different heights within the breast. These structures can overlap and cause confusion when viewed as a flat two-dimensional image. This confusion of overlapping of tissue is a leading reason why small breast cancers may be missed and normal tissue may appear abnormal, leading to unnecessary callbacks. Using breast tomosynthesis technology, the Hologic system creates a 3-dimensional image of the breast structure, which enables radiologists to more clearly see through overlapping tissue to detect cancers, often at an earlier stage.

 
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