Digital mammography and 3D Tomosynthesis

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For the first time in Paphos, digital mammography at Evangelismos Private Hospital will now be supplemented by three dimensional tomosynthesis. Breast imaging with this method is performed with more accuracy, higher sensitivity and lower radiation. Digital breast tomosynthesis is a new three-dimensional (3D) technique that has the potential to increase the accuracy of digital mammography.

How does 3D tomosynthesis differ from digital mammography?

The big problem with classical mammography is that when the breast is compressed during the examination, the various elements are compressed on top of one another, increasing the possibility for something to go unnoticed due to the overlapping. With the technology of the tomosynthesis, however, the breast is imaged with multiple, one millimetre slices. This means that you cannot miss anything. Thus, making digital tomosynthesis a more reliable examination for the woman.

What are the advantages of digital tomosynthesis?

  • Eliminates the chances of a false-positive or false-negative diagnosis.
  • Increasing the diagnostic accuracy of small lesions at an early stage.
  • Fewer repeated tests.
  • Fewer biopsies.
  • Less pressure on the breast, and therefore less pain.

What happens eventually with the radiation we receive? It is more than the classic digital mammography?

The time required for digital tomosynthesis is slightly more in relation to that of classic digital mammography, but the dose of radiation still remains low and safe. Women who avoid mammograms out of fear that the radiation may harm them, should be aware that the radiation from mammography is about as much as you would receive when sitting in the sun on a sunny day.

Can I do only digital tomosynthesis without mammography?

Digital mammography with tomosynthesis is, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), an independent imaging technique which complements digital mammography for a better diagnosis. Digital mammography still remains as the main examination, and if necessary, is completed with digital tomosynthesis.

Which women should have digital tomosynthesis?

This method is recommended for women with dense fibrocystic breasts, as well as young women because of its ability to penetrate the mammary parenchyma, and also for women with family history.

Digital tomosynthesis also recommended in cases where further investigation is needed from findings in classic digital mammography.