Mammography uses low-energy X-rays to examine the breasts for signs of breast cancer, such as masses or microcalcifications in the breast tissue. It is used to screen women without symptoms and to diagnose certain conditions that affect breast tissue in women who do have symptoms.
The László Tabár Breast Centre at the Specialist Women’s Imaging Centre is home to Australia’s first installation of the PRISTINA 3D MAMMOGRAPHY SYSTEM: the only mammogram unit on the Sunshine Coast that enables the use of contrast (x-ray dye).
Routine mammography images
A nodular lesion with non-well deifined borders was identified at the right midline upper breast on the MLO view using the standard mammography. Ultrasound shows a solid nodule with well defined borders (associated with calcifications).
Senobright contrast-enhanced images
The Senobright images show a suspicous area (nodule) on the right breast. Biopsy proved invasive ductal carcinoma.
What is a mammogram?
A mammogram is an x-ray that uses a very low dose x-ray system for examination of the breast.
At the Specialist Women's Imaging Centre we use the lowest dose digital (mammography) machine available to provide the highest quality of images.
Most medical experts agree that successful treatment of breast cancer is linked to early detection. A Mammogram can detect changes in the breast up to two years before a lump is palpable. The addition of breast Ultrasound increases the sensitivity and specificity of breast examination by up to 30%.
At what age should a woman have a mammogram?
The overwhelming majority of breast cancer experts worldwide recommend mammography once a year, beginning at the age of 40. Women who have had breast cancer and those who are at an increased risk due to genetic history of breast cancer, should seek medical advice about whether they begin mammography before the age of 40 and the frequency of testing.
We recommend that you discuss any breast changes, or problems with your doctor. Additionally, inform your doctor of any prior surgeries, hormone usage and family or personal history of breast cancer.
How is the procedure performed?
During a mammogram, the Mammographer will position you to image your breast. The breast is placed on a special platform and compressed with a paddle (often made of clear Plexiglas or other plastic).
Most patients are nervous and apprehensive about having their breast compressed. However, breast compression is necessary to:
- Even out the breast's thickness so all of the tissue can be visualised.
- Spread out the tissue so that small abnormalities won't be obscured by overlying breast tissue.
- Allow the use of lower x-ray dose since a thinner amount of breast tissue is being imaged.
- Hold the breast still to eliminate blurring of the image caused by motion.
- Reduce x-ray scatter to increase sharpness of the picture.
Who interprets the results and when should I receive them?
Our Specialist Women't Imaging Centre radiologist is a physician specialist in mammography and other x-ray examinations. He will analyse the images, describe any abnormalities and suggest a likely diagnosis. This analysis is conveyed to your doctor with any follow-up recommendations.
Endorsed by Prof. László Tabár
Our mammography services are provided by Dr Sean O’Connor, the only radiologist on the Sunshine Coast with a fellowship in Women’s Imaging and one of the most experienced MRI readers in Queensland. Dr Connor trained under the guidance of Professor László Tabár, whose pioneering research has laid the foundation for early detection through modern mammographic screening.
Mammograms take place in the László Tabár Breast Centre at Specialist Women’s Imaging Centre, one of only two clinics in the world to be endorsed by Professor László Tabár. The Centre utilises the highly advanced GE Senographe DS Digital Mammography machine, which provides the lowest dose mammography available.
Do you need a Mammogram?
Call Coastal Medical Imaging and one of our friendly staff will book your scan and answer any questions you may have.