Digital mammography is a specialized form of mammography that uses digital receptors and computers instead of x-ray film to help examine breast tissue for breast cancer. The electrical signals can be read on computer screens, permitting more use of images to allow radiologists a clear view of the results.
A breast ultrasound uses sound waves to create a picture of the tissues inside the breast. Unlike a mammogram, a breast ultrasound shows all areas of the breast, including the area closest to the chest wall, which is hard to study with a mammogram. A breast ultrasound should not replace a mammogram, but it is helpful to see whether a breast lump is filled with fluid, known as a cyst, or if it is a solid lump. It does not use x-rays or other potentially harmful types of radiation.
A breast biopsy is a quick, accurate, and minimally invasive procedure that evaluates a suspicious area in the breast to determine if it is cancer. A small sample of breast tissue is removed for laboratory testing to identify and diagnose abnormalities in the cells to see if additional surgery or treatment is necessary.
Fine Needle Aspiration
During a fine-needle aspiration, a thin needle is inserted into a breast lump to withdraw fluid. This procedure is often done using ultrasound to guide accurate placement of the needle. If the fluid comes out and your lump goes away successfully, your doctor can make a breast cyst diagnosis.
This is a simple procedure performed to drain a symptomatic or questionable cyst within the breast tissue. In this procedure, local anesthesia is used to numb the skin. Then the breast radiologist guides a thin needle into the cyst using ultrasound guidance. The fluid is then withdrawn into a syringe. The fluid is usually discarded (not tested) unless blood is found.
A Breast MRI is an imaging test that helps determine if a lump in the breast is cancerous or benign. This test uses a magnetic field and pulses of radio waves to make pictures of the breast. The Breast MRI may show problems in the breast that cannot be seen on a mammogram, ultrasound, or CT scan. The picture shows your breast’s normal structure, and identifies tissue damage or disease, inflammation, or a lump.
Patients diagnosed with a fibroadenoma (a benign breast tumor) now have the option to choose cryoablation as treatment, which is both highly effective and minimally invasive. Many women choose cryoablation over surgical excision due to the fact that it’s an in-office procedure with a shorter recovery time.
How does cryoablation of fibroadenomas work?
Cryoablation is a minimally invasive, in-office procedure that takes about 10-20 minutes and requires only local anesthesia. It is very similar to a breast biopsy. Ultrasound is used to direct the cryoprobe, which resembles a thin needle, to the location of the fibroadenoma. The tip of the probe gets extremely cold creating an ice that surrounds the tumor and destroys it. The body then absorbs the damaged tissue over time, replacing it with healthy tissue.
Step-by-Step Procedure with Video
What are the benefits of cryoablation compared to surgery?
• Cryoablation is quick and is an in-office procedure
• Cryoablation requires minimal recovery and downtime
• Cryoablation uses local anesthesia as oppose to general anesthesia
• Cryoablation uses a tiny 3mm incision and is less likely to create scarring or affect the cosmetic appearance of the breast
Who is cryoablation appropriate for?
• Painful, uncomfortable, or symptomatic fibroadenomas
• Growing fibroadenomas
• A women with a fibroadenoma who would like it removed due to personal preference
To request a consultation with one of our board-certified breast interventional radiologists please call 305.740.5100 or email email@example.com. A member of our team will get back to you within 1 business day.
Genetic Testing for Hereditary Cancer Risk
Hereditary cancer is caused by an inherited genetic mutation. Approximately, 10-15% of most cancers are due to inherited genetic mutations. In these families, it is typical to see a recurring pattern of cancer across two to three generations—like multiple individuals diagnosed with the same type of cancer(s) and individuals diagnosed with cancer much younger than average.
A mutation can greatly increase your risk for developing cancer. Mutations in the genes that increase risk for cancer are not that common, but when present they significantly increase the chances someone might develop cancer in his or her lifetime.
For example, a BRCA1 mutation can increase a woman’s chance of breast cancer up to 81% and ovarian cancer up to 54% by age 80.
Your provider may adjust your screening plan if you have a mutation.
Knowing that you have a mutation that increases your risk of developing cancer allows you and your healthcare provider to create a personalized screening plan, which increases the chance of early detection.
The Diagnostic Center for Women is partnering with Color to offer comprehensive genetic testing for 8 different types of cancer (Breast, Ovarian, Colon, Uterine, Melanoma, Stomach, Pancreatic and Prostate) to any person who is interested in learning if they have an increased risk for hereditary cancer.