Diagnostic Breast Services
Proper treatment of breast disease begins with the right diagnosis. If your screening mammography reveals a lump or abnormal mass, it’s important to follow up with a diagnostic mammography and/or other diagnostic procedures to confirm whether cancer is present.
At Mercy, our breast health experts perform a full array of advanced diagnostic breast services, including 3D mammography. These procedures can accurately pinpoint any abnormalities and can confirm a breast cancer diagnosis rapidly.
The following diagnostic breast services are available throughout Mercy:
Diagnostic Mammography (including 3D mammography or digital breast tomosynthesis) involves taking additional x-ray images of each breast at different angles. A diagnostic mammography is useful at detecting microcalcifications, an early sign of breast cancer. 3D mammography offers more comprehensive views of breast tissue form multiple angles.
Breast Ultrasound uses High-frequency sound waves that are transmitted through breast tissue from a hand-held unit called a transducer. These sound waves bounce off breast tissues and create images recorded by a computer. No radiation is used, and minimal pressure on the breast is required. A breast ultrasound is useful in allowing a radiologist to distinguish between a breast cyst and a solid mass.
Breast MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is used to further evaluate abnormalities seen on mammography, as well as to determine the extent of cancer after a breast cancer diagnosis is confirmed. MRI uses magnetic forces to produce detailed images of the breast tissue on a computer.
Breast biopsy is the removal of tissue to be examined under a microscope. Biopsies are usually ordered in the case of abnormal test or imaging results from an area of concern of the body. The tissue samples are examined by pathologists, who check for the presence of cancer cells. A breast biopsy report will list the findings of the cancer and its characteristics. Several different breast biopsy techniques exist and your physician will use the least invasive method depending on your case:
- MRI Guided Breast Biopsy
- Stereotactic Guided Breast Biopsy
- Ultrasound Guided Breast Biopsy
- Needle localization Breast Biopsy