Digital Mammography

Wellspring Breast Care Center
Upstate University Hospital - Community Campus
Physician Office Building South,
4900 Broad Road
Syracuse, NY 13215
Map & directions
Phone: 315 492-5007
Fax: 315 492-5299
Hours: Mon-Fri, 7:30am-5:00pm Open second Sat of each month from 8:00am-12:00pm for Screening Mammography only. For appointments: (315) 492-5702
Name: Julie Tenkate, RT (R,M)
Email: tenkatej@upstate.edu

Regular screening examinations enable early detection of breast cancer, which leads to a significant increase in the chance of recovery. Mammography is considered the best way to detect breast cancer in its earliest, most treatable stage.

Analog Mammography

Analog mammography records images using film processing (as compared to digital, discussed below). The examination is performed by placing the patient's breast between the mammography unit's X-ray tube and an X-ray film and then carefully pressing it against a compression plate. The X-rays passing through the breast tissue blacken the X-ray film. However, the X-ray film remains white at locations where the X-rays were not able to pass through the tissue. The result is a black gray-and-white image of the breast.

Digital Mammography

Another type of mammography is digital mammography. The examination procedure is exactly the same as for analog mammography. However, instead of exposing film, the X-rays hit an advanced detector, which senses the image data digitally and electronically. The resulting images are evaluated by the physician with a special computer. Several software tools are also at the doctor's disposal to simplify diagnosis.

Benefits of Digital Mammography

  • Up to 40% less radiation dose over standard film mammography
  • Fewer callbacks or retakes for additional images because images can be enhanced with the computer
  • Less time may be needed because the results are seen more quickly - so that means less anxiety and discomfort for you
  • The doctor can electronically manipulate images with digital mammograms for a more accurate diagnosis
  • The potential for more efficient access to mammograms is possible because digital mammograms can be electronically transmitted to another physician for viewing or printing
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