Breast Cancer Battle: New Tool is Saving Lives

In In The News by Barbara Jacoby

LLH network pressGetting a traditional mammogram may soon be a thing of the past for thousands of women in Northeast Ohio.

Technology company Hologic created a machine that carries out a procedure called digital breast tomosynthesis.

University Hospitals was among the first in the nation to use the groundbreaking technology.

Doctor Donna Plecha at UH Seidman Cancer Center said, “Instead of seeing four images of a basic mammogram, we may see up to 200 or more images, so it slices the breast in one-millimeter slices, almost like a CT scan.”

The new digital imaging allows doctors to see different images of the breast in much more detail that they would otherwise.

The new technology is already saving lives.

In just the first 15 months of usage at University Hospitals, the machine has increased cancer detection rates by 60%.

Eileen Goulder of Moreland Hills was called back to UH after undergoing a routine mammogram. Doctors spotted a cyst that turned out to be benign and she selected tomosynthesis.

While insurance doesn’t cover the new digital procedure, she said the $65 fee was worth every penny.

Goulder said, “It takes a good 45 minutes out of your life, but it’s worth it because it could save your life.”