Detect breast cancer early with 3-D mammography

Posted on 10/17/2016

Screening and diagnostic tool aids in early detection of breast cancer.

In recognition of October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Palmetto Health wants to remind women that early detection and screening are keys to saving lives of women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Palmetto Health offers mammography services throughout the system and adds digital breast tomosynthesis, or 3-D mammography, to its arsenal to aid in early detection.

Tomosynthesis or 3-D technology currently is available at all Palmetto Health hospitals and on the mobile mammography unit. This technology obtains a series of images that are reconstructed into thin 1-millimeter electronic “slices,” creating a 3-dimensional mammogram.

For women with dense breast tissue, 3-D mammography allows improved visualization, allowing radiologists to detect 41 percent more invasive breast cancers and reducing the number of so-called “false positives.”

“Early detection of breast cancer is vital. That’s where technology makes a difference,” says Douglas Bull, M.D., radiologist, Pitts Radiology. “3-D mammography gives us the ability to see masses, particularly in dense breast tissue, that we might have difficulty detecting with traditional mammography.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, after skin cancer, breast cancer is the second most common cancer found among American women. Each year, more than 200,000 U.S. women develop breast cancer and nearly 40,000 women die. Breast cancer is second only to lung cancer as the leading cause of cancer death among women in the U.S.

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About Palmetto Health
Palmetto Health, the largest health care system in the South Carolina Midlands region and one of the state’s largest employers, comprises more than 14,000 team members, physicians and volunteers working together to fulfill Palmetto Health’s Vision: To be remembered by each patient as providing the care and compassion we want for our families and ourselves. The system includes six acute-care hospitals in the Midlands—Palmetto Health Baptist, Palmetto Health Baptist Parkridge, Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital, Palmetto Health Heart Hospital, Palmetto Health Richland and Palmetto Health Tuomey. In the South Carolina Upstate region, Palmetto Health also co-owns Baptist Easley Hospital. Recognized nationally as one of the best places to work and receive care, the system also includes the Palmetto Health-USC Medical Group, the region’s largest multispecialty group, which serves as the entry point to the health care system with more than 500 providers serving patients in more than 80 practices and nearly 100 locations. Palmetto Health also is supported by two 501 (c)(3) foundations, and trains the next generation of physicians through its 24 residency and fellowship programs affiliated with the University of South Carolina School of Medicine. For more information, visit or call 803-296-CARE (2273).


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