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Northwest Medical Center – Bentonville now offering 3D mammograms

Officials say 3D mammograms help detect breast cancer at earlier and treatable stages.

BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Northwest Medical Center – Bentonville is now offering Breast tomosynthesis better known as three-dimensional mammograms.

The mammograms are available at the center's imaging department. 

Officials say 3D mammograms provide a 3D view of breast tissues which enhances the images reviewed by radiologists helping detect breast cancer at an early and treatable stage.

“What I like about this new technology is that it helps our doctors identify and characterize individual breast structures without tissue overlapping, which can happen in two-dimensional exams,” said Northwest Health Market Imaging Director Tyra Bowen. “This overlapping tissue is a reason why small breast cancers may be missed and normal tissue may appear abnormal.”

With these mammograms, the patient's tissue is converted into a stack of thin layers for radiologists to review. This allows details to become more visible instead of hidden above or below the tissue.

Northwest Medical Center -Bentonville Radiology Manager Angela Brackin says 3D mammograms are a great option for women with dense breast tissue and can reduce callbacks or the number of women asked to return to the hospital for additional testing. Brackin says the 3D exam is similar to a conventional 2D mammogram.

“Compression time is just 15 seconds and it offers a low-dose radiation exposure,” said Brackin. “What makes the 3D option stand out is that we’ll now be able to have access to more detailed images resulting in better detection of breast cancers.”

 “Our team is excited to bring this new technology to our community and offer advanced care to our patients,” said NMC-B Chief Executive Officer Patrick Kerrwood. “This latest addition to our imaging department is just one example of our commitment to offer the best health care to the people of Northwest Arkansas and our surrounding communities.”

Officials say breast cancer is the second most common cancer for women in the U.S. and one of the leading causes of female deaths. Officials state one in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer and early detection is the most effective tool.

The American College of Radiology recommends annual mammograms starting at age 40 for women of average risk starting at age 40. Different guidelines for women at higher risk and recommendations can be found here.

Three-dimensional mammograms are not recommended for all patients. Officials say you should ask your primary care provider if breast tomosynthesis is right for you. A physician order is not required for a screening mammogram, but patients must provide a physician or provider name when an appointment is made. 

To request a mammogram appointment click here.

   

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