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Here’s to Clearer Breast Imaging in 2017!

Here’s to Clearer Breast Imaging in 2017!

Dec 28 2016

The New Year will bring clearer answers and less anxiety for women being screened for breast cancer.

A new state law will go into effect on January 1 that requires health insurance companies to cover the cost of 3-D mammograms when women 40 and older request it (asreported by WTNH here).

3-D mammography, also known as tomosynthesis, is considered the “gold standard” in digital mammography because it gives radiologists the ability to examine breast tissue in millimeter sized layers. The technology converts digital breast images into a stack of very thin layers which are combined to create a more comprehensive 3-D image. This means that fine details are more clearly visible and not hidden by tissue above and below, which can happen with basic digital mammography.

Studies have shown that 3D mammography increases the detection of invasive breast cancers by 41 percent. Just as important, the technology cuts down on false positives, which can result in needless and costly additional tests and anxiety for the patient.

Griffin Hospital’s Hewitt Center for Breast Wellness has offered its patients 3D mammography since 2012, when it became one of the first hospitals in the state to acquire the technology. 3D mammography is performed in addition to a basic digital mammogram to increase the sensitivity of detection and reduce false positives on images.

Griffin applauds all the members of the state legislature who supported this law and looks forward to a future where all women will benefit both physically and emotionally from this technology, which reduces needless call backs for further testing and helps find breast cancer at an earlier, and more treatable stage.

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