An advanced new tool for detecting breast cancer
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Breast Gamma Camera provides clearer and more concise images to women with questionable mammograms. It helps doctors more quickly and accurately determine if an area of concern is cancerous or not.
HealthEast is excited to be among the first in the Twin Cities to offer the Breast Gamma Camera. It is located at the HealthEast Breast Care Center at St. John’s Hospital. A doctor's referral is needed.
The Breast Gamma Camera is also known as Breast Specific Gamma Imaging or BSGI.
How women benefit
Working on a cellular or molecular level, Breast Gamma Camera can differentiate cancer from non-cancerous tissue in the breast. It can help detect cancers at very early stages, when it is most treatable.
Other benefits of the Breast Gamma Camera include:
- May help reduce biopsies that result in negative findings
- Is safe and effective
- Can provide same-day results
- Is easy and comfortable
- Is a strong diagnostic tool in early breast cancer detection
How the Breast Gamma Camera works
The Breast Gamma Camera allows for images to be taken with no compression of the breast. Instead, a small amount of a tracing agent is injected into the arm or foot and is absorbed by all the cells of the body. The tracing agent usually concentrates in cancerous cells because they have a higher rate of molecular activity. A specially developed imaging system is then used to examine the breast. This helps doctors to better differentiate cancer from other structures or benign tissue in the breast.
A complement to mammograms
Mammography is still the first-line screening tool for breast cancer. A mammogram is an x-ray study of the breast used to view tissue structure and density. For some women, mammograms are difficult to interpret due to things like dense breast tissue or breast implants.
Breast Gamma Camera is a valuable “next step” after a mammogram has revealed an area of concern.
Who is Breast Gamma Camera right for?
Women who benefit from this technology include:
Women with dense breast tissue
X-rays do not penetrate dense breast tissue very well, which makes it harder for your doctor to interpret the mammogram. In addition to younger and pre-menopausal women, dense tissue often occurs in women going through hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or those who have undergone radiation treatment. Breast Gamma Camera detects cellular changes (regardless of breast density) that a mammogram may miss.
Women who are breast cancer survivors or have scarring from previous surgery
Scar tissue, trauma or radiation therapy can look suspicious on a mammogram. It can be difficult to differentiate scarring from tumors with mammography. Breast Gamma Camera can see hidden areas and reveal cancerous lesions.
Women who have a mammogram that shows multiple areas of concern
Calcium deposits are frequently detected in mammography. While these calcium deposits are benign, some are suggestive of the presence of a malignancy. In such a case, further investigation is necessary. Breast Gamma Camera allows doctors to evaluate the entire breast at different angles to help identify any cancerous lesions.
Women who have breast implants
Implants can make interpreting mammograms difficult, even with special compression views of the breast. Breast Gamma Camera does not require compression of the breast and its detection of cancer is not hindered by implants.
Women with lumps in the breast that can be felt but not seen with mammography or ultrasound
To learn more
To find out if Breast Gamma Camera is right for you, talk to your doctor or call 651-232-7657.