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Ellinwood brings 3D Mammography to area

Ellinwood Hospital and Clinic announced the addition of 3D Mammography to its lineup of services, ending National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with good news for patients and providers. The service will be scheduled monthly, starting December 3. Call us at 620-564-2548 to schedule your appointment today.

When breast cancer is detected early - before it has spread - it is easier to treat and women have a much better chance of living a long life. Screenings are tests that are given to people who have no symptoms, to find out if they might have a disease. Mammograms are the best way to screen women for breast cancer. For American Cancer Society screening guidelines, click here.

“3D mammography is a service that we are proud to introduce to our patients,” reports Kile Magner, Ellinwood Hospital and Clinic CEO. “It offers better cancer detection, fewer false positives, and more peace of mind for patients.”

Three-dimensional mammography (also called digital breast tomosynthesis, digital tomosynthesis, or just tomosynthesis) creates a three-dimensional picture of the breast using X-rays. Several low-dose images from different angles around the breast are used to create the 3D picture, whereas a conventional mammogram creates a two-dimensional image of the breast from two X-ray images of each breast.

“By having more images, the radiologist can see the breast tissue in greater detail, allowing for more certain diagnoses,” explains Tenelle Nuest, Radiology Director at Ellinwood Hospital and Clinic. “That means that earlier detection of cancer is possible, and it limits the anxiety of an unnecessary callback.”

3D Mammography is offered at the hospital monthly by United Radiology Group, out of Salina. United Radiology owns and operates a mobile 3D mammography/Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DEXA) coach that travels to hospital throughout the region. The mobile unit contains state-of-the-art mammography and DEXA equipment and is staffed by their highly-trained technologists and staff.


The American Cancer Society recommends breast cancer screenings based on risk level:

Average breast cancer risk

  • Women between 40 and 44 have the option to start screening with a mammogram every year.

  • Women 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year.

  • Women 55 and older can switch to a mammogram every other year, or they can choose to continue yearly mammograms. Screening should continue as long as a woman is in good health and is expected to live 10 more years or longer.

High breast cancer risk

  • Women who are at high risk for breast cancer based on certain factors should get an MRI and a mammogram every year, typically starting at age 30. This includes women who:

  • Have a lifetime risk of breast cancer of about 20% to 25% or greater, according to risk assessment tools that are based mainly on family history (see below)

  • Have a known BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation (based on having had genetic testing)

  • Have a first-degree relative (parent, brother, sister, or child) with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation, and have not had genetic testing themselves

  • Had radiation therapy to the chest when they were between the ages of 10 and 30 years

  • Have Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Cowden syndrome, or Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndrome, or have first-degree relatives with one of these syndromes

  • Most women at high risk should begin screening with MRI and mammograms when they are 30 and continue for as long as they are in good health. But a woman at high risk should make the decision to start with her health care providers, taking into account her personal circumstances and preferences.

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