Advanced Imaging Technology Helps AHN Doctors Detect Breast Cancer Earlier

Breast tomosynthesis, one of the most advanced techniques for detecting breast cancer at its earliest, most curable stages, is now available at three additional Allegheny Health Network (AHN) locations: Allegheny General Hospital, Forbes Hospital and West Penn Hospital.

In total, six AHN Breast Center locations throughout the city and suburbs now offer convenient access to breast tomosynthesis, including the Wexford Health & Wellness Pavilion, Bethel Park Health & Wellness Pavilion, and the West Side Health & Wellness Pavilion in Erie.

While traditional mammography captures a single image of the breast, tomosynthesis, also known as 3-D mammography, takes multiple images in “slices” that allow doctors to see internal breast tissue in sharp detail, minimizing false-positive and false-negative readings. Breast tomosynthesis can be particularly helpful for women who have dense breast tissue, or women who are at high risk of developing breast cancer.

In October 2015, Pennsylvania began requiring all insurers to pay for 3-D mammography, making the technology more readily available to women.  3-D mammography is used in addition to traditional mammography, and uses an amount of radiation well below federal guidelines.

“Our goal at Allegheny Health Network is to ensure that all women have access to 3-D mammography, the best screening available for early detection of breast cancer,” said William Poller, MD, FACR, Director of Breast Imaging at AHN. “We are very happy to offer breast tomosynthesis in three new locations, and expect to expand its use to more AHN facilities in the near future.”

Acquisition of the new technology was made possible in part by generous donations from Pittsburgh-based Glimmer of Hope. The local breast cancer advocacy group has given more than $250,000 to AHN over the past two years, helping provide women across the region with better access to the most advanced breast imaging technology available.

“The addition of three new breast tomosynthesis units marks a significant step forward in helping our clinicians detect breast cancer,” said David Parda, MD, Chair, Allegheny Health Network Cancer Institute. “At Allegheny Health Network, we provide our patients with the most effective ways to battle cancer from every possible angle, with innovative procedures, medicines and technology.”

The new AHN locations offering breast tomosynthesis are:
 

  • Allegheny General Hospital Breast Care Center, 320 E. North Ave., Fourth Floor Cancer Center, on Pittsburgh’s North Side; 412.DOCTORS (412.362.8677).
     
  • Forbes Hospital Breast Care Center, 2580 Haymaker Road, Professional Office Building 2, Suite 303, Monroeville, PA ; 412.858.3132.
     
  • West Penn Hospital Outpatient Services, 4800 Friendship Ave. in Pittsburgh’s Bloomfield neighborhood; 412.578.1000
     

Additional breast imaging locations within AHN include:

  • AGH McCandless
  • Allegheny Valley Hospital (AVH) Outpatient Services in New Kensington
     
  • AVH Radiological Imaging in Natrona Heights
     
  • Allegheny Imaging in Robinson Township
     
  • Brentwood Professional Plaza
     
  • Canonsburg Hospital Outpatient Services
     
  • Jefferson Diagnostics at the Waterfront
     
  • Jefferson Medical Arts Building
     
  • Premier Medical Associates in Monroeville
  • Saint Vincent Outpatient Center at Union City
     
  • Saint Vincent Women’s Center
     
  • South Hills Medical Building at Jefferson Hospital.