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Bon Secours introduces 3-D breast screening

Published 9:16pm Saturday, February 8, 2014

Bon Secours Health Center at Harbour View has announced an expansion of its Millie Lancaster Women’s Center to include another mammography room with 3-D imaging technology.

Doctors can use 3-D mammography to examine breast tissue a layer at a time, inspecting for any abnormalities.

The technology provides multiple images of the breast at different angles. High-powered computers convert digital breast images into a stack of thin layers, viewed as a detailed reconstruction of the breast.

“In the fight against cancer, early detection is our most powerful weapon,” Susan McKenzie, a radiologist with Bon Secours, said in a news release.

“Mammography is the only proven breast cancer screening tool to reduce mortality. It is the gold standard in diagnosing cancer. Digital breast tomosynthesis, or 3-D mammography, is the latest innovation in breast cancer detection.”

According to experts, adding 3-D mammography to conventional 2-D mammography results in a 40-percent higher detection rate of invasive cancer, which can help doctors diagnose cancer much earlier.

If breast cancer is caught early, the five-year survival rate is as high as 98 percent, according to experts.

Breast cancer remains the second-highest cause of cancer death for women, with one in eight destined to develop the disease, according to research.

Meanwhile, history has shown that western Hampton Roads, including Suffolk, Chesapeake and Portsmouth, has higher breast cancer incidence and mortality rates than the national average.

A study by the National Cancer Institute found incidence of breast cancer is 28 percent higher in Suffolk than the national average. For Portsmouth and Chesapeake, it’s 41 percent and 10 percent, respectively.

The Harbour View facility is being upgraded with community donations to the Bon Secours Maryview Foundation, Bon Secours spokeswoman Lynne Zultanky said. Community members and Bon Secours employees, including Dr. Mark Kerner with Virginia Orthopaedic and Spine Specialists, worked with the foundation to raise the funds, she added.

The mammography room will be named after Kerner’s wife, Dr. Anuradha Datney Kerner, who died of breast cancer in 2009.

Agencies including the American Cancer Society and the Tidewater affiliate of Susan G. Komen have also contributed to helping educate women on the importance of detecting breast cancer early, as well as free mammograms for uninsured women, Zultanky said.

To schedule a 3-D mammogram at the Millie Lancaster Women’s Center, call 398-2316.

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