Imaging Technique to Detect Breast Masses, Lesions and Tumors
As an academic medical center, Loyola provides compassionate, comprehensive care to patients and trains future leaders in advanced imaging technology. Loyola takes a multidisciplinary approach to patient care and provides support services for patients and families. Your entire Loyola healthcare team has one goal: restoring you to better health.
Electronic images are available to your doctors instantly through an electronic medical record system, allowing us to deliver timely, effective care to our patients. At Loyola, we understand the importance of continuity of care and we will provide seamless communication with your doctor through our secure medical information portal, LoyolaConnect. You can also access results from your imaging, lab tests and evaluations through myLoyola.
Breast Imaging at Loyola University Health System is recognized as an American College of Radiology Breast Center of Excellence.
What Breast Imaging Tests are Available?
Loyola’s expert clinicians know that early detection is the key to treating breast cancer successfully. We educate patients on the importance of regular breast cancer screening and are experienced in using a variety of tools to detect, diagnose and stage breast cancer. Loyola’s dedicated team will deliver the highest quality of care – from diagnosis to treatment and beyond. We offer advanced breast imaging technology including:
- Digital mammography and digital breast tomosynthesis (3D mammography) – Mammography is the only imaging test that has been proven to decrease the death rate from breast cancer, by 30 percent or more since screening mammography was introduced. This reduction in death rate has been proven to be independent of new treatment options. Screening for breast cancer with mammography can detect many cancers before a lump can be felt, when the cancer is more localized, preventing more extensive surgery and often obviating the need for chemotherapy. Both mammography and digital breast tomosynthesis use low dose x-rays for the detection of breast cancer.
- Breast ultrasound and automated whole breast ultrasound – Ultrasound technology uses sound waves to create images of the breast and is used for both diagnostic and screening purposes. Automated whole breast ultrasound offers a reproducible standardized test that has been shown to increase cancer detection rates in women with dense breasts and at least one risk factor for developing breast cancer.
- Breast MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) – Breast MRI is used to screen for breast cancer in women at increased risk for developing breast cancer and is also often used to to evaluate women with newly diagnosed breast cancer to determine extent of disease and to evaluate the opposite breast for possible cancer. MRI technology uses a magnetic field and radio waves to obtain images as well as an IV contrast dye to detect abnormal areas within the breast. Both 1.5T and 3T magnets are available to Loyola patients for screening and diagnostic breast MRI.
- Image-guided breast biopsy – Loyola’s expert clinicians use mammographic ultrasound, and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) guidance to biopsy or localize a suspicious breast lesion. Our team of breast radiologists uses these various types of image guidance to obtain a sample of tissue using a hollow or core needle. The biopsied tissue is then tested in the pathology department to determine if it is benign or malignant.
- PET scan (positron emission tomography) – PET scanning may be used in staging newly diagnosed breast cancers and also may be used in patients who are undergoing treatment for breast cancer to determine if the cancer is responding to treatment.
State-of-the-Art Facilities for the Diagnosis of Breast Conditions
Loyola offers screening and diagnostic breast imaging and image-guided procedures in outstanding, conveniently located facilities. We offer multidisciplinary facilities at the Loyola University Medical Center campus, in addition to outpatient services at other locations, typically allowing you to schedule both your imaging and your appointment with your doctor on the same day.
Ongoing Research to Advance Breast Imaging
Loyola’s breast imaging team is actively pursuing new research in breast imaging and intervention, and closely participates with other clinical departments in the treatment of breast cancer. As an academic medical center, Loyola is dedicated to improving patient health and clinical outcomes by conducting research on both diagnostic and treatment options. Loyola’s patients benefit from research discoveries currently being made here. Read about Loyola’s current clinical trials here.