Breast Center

Breast Center

Happy women in circle wearing pink for breast cancer against breast cancer awareness ribbon

We are proud to offer comprehensive breast services at our ACR accredited facility—part of the first accredited breast center in the county. Thousand Oaks Radiology joins a select few in the nation designated by the ACR (American College of Radiology) as a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence (BICOE). We provide the highest standard of imaging services in a caring, comfortable environment.

For the past several years, Thousand Oaks Radiology has been the proud Flagship sponsor for the American Cancer Society’s annual Breast Cancer Awareness event, “Making Strides.” Additionally, during the month of October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness month, we also hold a half day event to provide mammograms to the community at a significantly reduced cost.

We are committed to providing the most up to date technology and research in this area.

Digital tomosynthesis (pronounced toh-moh-SIN-thah-sis), creates a 3-dimensional picture of the breast using X-rays. 3D Mammography (digital tomosynthesis), is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration but is not yet considered the standard of care for breast cancer screening. It is a very new technology and is available at Thousand Oaks Radiology.

What is the difference between Digital Mammography and 3D Mammography?

Digital mammography usually takes two X-rays of each breast from different angles: top to bottom and side to side. The breast is pulled away from the body, compressed, and held between two glass plates to ensure that the whole breast is viewed. Digital mammography records the pictures on the computer. The images are then read by our radiologist. Breast cancer, which is denser than most healthy nearby breast tissue, appears as irregular white areas — sometimes called shadows.

3D Mammography (Digital tomosynthesis), is a new kind of test that takes multiple X-ray pictures of each breast from many angles. The breast is positioned the same way it is in a conventional mammogram. The X-ray tube moves in an arc around the breast while 9 images are taken during the examination. Then the information is sent to a computer, where it is assembled to produce clear, highly focused 3-dimensional images throughout the breast.

For more information on 3D Mammography, see 3D Mammography – Digital Tomosynthesis.

Mammography is a specific type of breast imaging that uses low-dose x-rays to detect cancer early – before women experience symptoms – when it is most treatable.

Tell your doctor about any breast symptoms or problems, prior surgeries, hormone use, whether you have a family or personal history of breast cancer, and if there’s a possibility you are pregnant. It is recommended you obtain copies of your prior mammograms and make them available to your radiologist on the day of your exam if you are going to a new facility to have it done. Leave jewelry at home and wear loose, comfortable clothing. You will be asked to wear a gown. Avoid wearing deodorant, any type of powder or lotion under your arms or on your breasts as these may appear on the mammogram and interfere with correct diagnosis.

What is Mammography?

Mammography is specialized medical imaging that uses a low-dose x-ray system to view the inside of the breasts. A mammography exam, also called a mammogram, aids in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women.

Recent advances in mammography include digital mammography, computer-aided detection and breast tomosynthesis (3D mammography).

For more information on Digital Mammography, see Digital Mamography.

Stereotactic breast biopsy uses mammography, (breast imaging) to help locate a breast lump or abnormality and remove a tissue sample for examination under a microscope.  It’s less invasive than surgical biopsy, leaves little to no scarring and can be an excellent way to evaluate calcium deposits or tiny masses that are not visible on ultrasound.

What is Stereotactic (Mammographically Guided) Breast Biopsy?

A breast biopsy is performed to remove some cells from a suspicious area in the breast where a lump or abnormality has been detected. These cells are evaluated under a microscope to determine a diagnosis. This can be performed by a radiologist using a less invasive procedure that involves a hollow needle and image-guidance.

In stereotactic breast biopsy, a digital mammography machine uses x-rays to help guide the radiologist’s biopsy equipment to the site of the abnormal growth.

For more information on Stereotactic Breast Biopsy, see Stereotactic Breast Biopsy.

What is Ultrasound Imaging of the Breast?

Ultrasound imaging, also called ultrasound scanning or sonography, uses a small transducer (probe) and ultrasound gel placed directly on the skin. High-frequency sound waves are transmitted from the probe through the gel into the body. The transducer receives the sounds that bounce back and a computer then uses those sound waves to create an image. Because ultrasound images are captured in real-time, they can show the structure and movement of the body’s internal organs, as well as blood flowing through blood vessels.

During a breast ultrasound the sonographer or physician performing the test may use Doppler techniques (Doppler ultrasound is a special ultrasound technique that allows the physician to see and evaluate blood flow through arteries and veins), to evaluate blood flow or lack of flow in any breast mass. In some cases this may provide additional information as to the cause of the mass or abnormality.

For more information on Ultrasound of the Breast, see Ultrasound of the Breast.

An ultrasound-guided breast biopsy uses sound waves to help locate a lump or abnormality and remove a tissue sample for examination under a microscope. It is less invasive than surgical biopsy, leaves little to no scarring and does not involve exposure to ionizing radiation.

What is Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy?

Lumps or abnormalities in the breast are often detected by mammography, physical examination or other imaging studies. However, it is not always possible to tell from these imaging tests whether a growth is benign or cancerous.

A breast biopsy is performed to remove some cells from a suspicious area in the breast and examine them under a microscope to determine a diagnosis. This is performed by our radiologist using a less invasive procedure that involves a hollow needle and image-guidance.

Ultrasound guided biopsy is performed by taking samples of an abnormality using the ultrasound imaging instruments to visualize the site of the abnormal growth. This type of biopsy is not done to remove the entire lesion.

For more information on Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy, see Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy.