HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (KFSN) -- In spite of recent debate over breast cancer screening, an annual mammogram after the age of 40 is still recommended for preventive cancer care. Now, there is new technology designed to lower the yearly radiation dose, and, in turn, a woman's risk.
Patricia Lewis is a strong believer in regular mammograms and, as a cancer patient, may be more in touch with her screening options than most.
Lewis told Ivanhoe, "I think that any woman today should take advantage of the latest technology. Especially in breast care."
With a traditional or two-dimensional mammogram, an X-ray of the breast makes it possible to see tumors that are too small to feel. But 3D mammography provides greater detail.
Mary Hayes, M.D., Chief of Breast Imaging at the Memorial Healthcare System, "The advantage and impact of 3D mammography over 2D is that we detect 40 percent more invasive killer cancers and decrease the false alarms by 15 percent."
Now, there's an even newer, FDA-approved 3D technology called C-View.
C-View is a computerized imaging system that eliminates the need for additional images through 3D mammography. Fewer images means a woman spends less time with her breast compressed and receives less radiation.
Dr. Hayes continued, "The greatest advantage of C-View is the low dose and that means that we decrease the dose by 40 percent. That's a lower dose than a woman who flies across the country, New York to L.A. round trip."
Making this a more comfortable and even less risky annual trip.
According to an international study, adding 3D mammography to two-dimensional mammography does improve the detection of breast cancers that are 'hidden' and otherwise tough to detect. The results of the screening trial were presented in December at the Radiological Society of North America's annual meeting in Chicago.
3D Mammograms with C-View -- Research Summary
BACKGROUND: Mammograms are X-ray pictures of the breast tissue that is used to identify breast cancer or cysts in women. The American Cancer Society recommends self-examinations as well as yearly mammograms for women, especially women over the age of 40. Many times, women with breast cancer do not exhibit any symptoms in the early stages, but the mammogram is able to identify the tumors or areas of suspicion to allow doctors to address the before they progress. There are two types of mammograms: diagnostic and screening. Diagnostic mammography takes longer to perform because it is used by doctors to get a more detailed picture of a specific suspicious area, so more images are taken. A screening mammogram is used to detect any presence of tumors or calcifications in women that may indicate breast cancer. (Source: http://www.cancer.gov/types/breast/mammograms-fact-sheet, http://medicinenet.com/script/main/mobileart.asp?articlekey=410&page=2)
LIMITATIONS AND RISKS: There are some risks in mammography. Because it uses X-ray technology, there is a small risk of exposure to low-dose radiation. Typically, sporadic exposure to low-dose radiation will not cause any complications but repeated exposure can cause increased risks of developing certain cancers. Mammograms also have some limitations including false-positive results, over diagnosis and overtreatment, and false-negative results. Screening mammograms have been shown to be false-negative in about 20 percent of breast cancers present in women. These complications and limitations can cause severe anxiety and psychological distress in women. Misdiagnosis can also cause a delay in treatment and enable the tumor to spread to more areas and organs in the body. (Source: http://www.cancer.gov/types/breast/mammograms-fact-sheet#q4, http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/mammogram/basics/risks/prc-20012723)
NEW TECHNOLOGY: 3D mammography is a new technology in breast cancer detection and, according to research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the technology can improve detection rates by more than 40 percent. In addition to the increased detection rates, 3D mammography has reduced the percentage of women who received false-positive results by 15 percent. Recently, Hologic, a company specializing in medical imaging systems, has developed a new 2D imaging software called C-View, to accompany the 3D mammogram. The software allows 3D mammography to reconstruct 2D images from the 3D data set. By doing this, patients are able to have an exam that averages around 3.7 seconds per view and allows patients to be more comfortable than with traditional 2D mammography. (Source: http://www.webmd.com/breast-cancer/news/20140624/3d-mammograms-may-improve-breast-cancer-screening, http://breasttomo.com/clinical-benefits/C-View)
3D Mammograms with C-View -- Doctor's In-depth Interview
Mary Hayes, M.D., Chief of Breast Imaging in the Department of Radiology at the Memorial Healthcare System talks about a new technology, Lower Dose 3D Mammography.
Interview conducted by Ivanhoe Broadcast News in July 2015
We're here to talk about a new medical breakthrough, can you tell us about C-View?
Dr. Hayes: C-View is the one of the latest technologies in digital mammography. C-View provides a lower dose mammogram using the benefits of 3D technology using the data from the 3D Mammogram to make a composite or a virtual zero-dose 2D image called C-View. So now, we only take a 3D mammogram image. By making a 2D mammogram out of it, called C-View (for Composite), we decrease the radiation dose to women by 40 percent.
Why is 3D better for women?
Dr. Hayes: 3D mammography is the strongest mammogram imaging available now. Although it looks and feels like a routine mammogram to the patient, the machine takes 15 mini low dose X-rays at various angles arcing over the breast. These 3D images are dime thin pictures each layer of breast tissue. This gives us a clearer picture of the tissue. Cancers that would otherwise be hidden by overlapping shadows in breast tissue can now be seen more clearly. We can see up to 40 percent more invasive cancers. Invasive cancers are the little killer cancer that can really harm women by spreading to other parts of the body. The other benefit of these dime thin 3D images is that we decrease false alarms to women by fifteen percent.
How new is C-View?
Dr. Hayes: C-View started from the 3D Digital Mammography platform. We had the first 3D unit in Florida in 2008. After 3D was FDA approved in 2011, it became our new standard and we started to work on the Lower Dose 3D research in 2013. Now that C-View is FDA approved and commercially available, we provide this Low Dose 3D Mammogram to all of our patients since May of 2015. Now, Lower Dose 3D mammography (also called C-View) is standard of care throughout Memorial Healthcare System.
How can you find facilities that use C-View?
Dr. Hayes: A computer search for 3D Mammography facilities in the zip code area should be a patient's first step. Once a facility is identified, call or search the web site to answer two important questions:
1) Is your facility ACR certified for mammography?
2) Does your facility have Lower Dose 3D Mammography (C -View)?
How important is it for a woman to get a 3D mammography versus 2D? And about what age should women have it done?
Dr. Hayes: 3D Mammography is the newest standard of care. It is the cutting edge for women in terms of getting the best mammography images with the lower radiation dose and the fewest false alarms. Starting at age 40 every woman should have an annual mammogram, preferably with the latest technology, Lower Dose 3D Mammogram. Older women should continue annual mammography as long as they expect to live for another 5-7 years.
Are you going to pay more for 3D?
Dr. Hayes: Most health insurance allows for a routine screening mammogram with no patient co-pay. For women who choose not to use insurance, she may opt for cash-only promotional rates, often offered around October or May.
And you recommend all women, at 40 years old, get a 3D mammography?
Dr. Hayes: All women should get screening mammography starting at age 40 and all women should try to get the Lower Dose 3D Mammogram (C-View) to get the most reliable test with the lowest radiation.
What are some of the concerns of doctors who aren't using this procedure and why aren't they using it?
Dr. Hayes: For some hospitals or clinics, cost remains a barrier. It's like upgrading any computer or car. There's a cost to pay to obtain the best equipment in a timely fashion. We are fortunate that Memorial Healthcare System continually reinvests in our community. We provide care to all patients regardless of their ability to pay.
Are there any risks?
Dr. Hayes: While no one test is perfect, mammography in general is considered a low risk exam. With Lower Dose 3D Mammography (C-View), we offer the lowest risk exam by decreasing the radiation dose by 40 percent.
How much is the radiation dose?
Dr. Hayes: Radiation dose is always a concern. Even though exams like mammography, dental x-rays and chest x-rays have very low dose, near zero, they still do have a small radiation dose. First, we must educate patients about radiation and put this in perspective. A woman gets more radiation exposure from flying from New York to L.A. than from getting a mammogram. However, our mutual goal is to keep any radiation dose as low as possible. With Lower Dose 3D Mammography (C-View), we decrease the dose of a mammogram by 40 percent, and that's a lower dose than a woman gets from flying across the country, New York to LA, round trip.
If you would like more information, please contact:
Mary Hayes, M.D.
3501 Johnson Street
Hollywood, FL 33021
3D Mammograms with C-View