3D Mammography Machine


41 Percent

Breast Screenings using 3D Mammography found 41% more invasive cancers than screening with conventional mammography.

The study, published in Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), also found a 15% decrease in unnecessary recalls for false alarms and 29% increase in the detection of all breast cancers when using 3D Mammograms.

Senior author Emily F. Conant, MD, chief of Breast Imaging the department of Radiology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania:

“It’s the most exciting improvement to mammography that I have seen in my career…3D mammography finds more clinically significant breast cancers earlier, which is the key so that women have more treatment options and ultimately better health outcomes.”


A total of 454,850 examinations were evaluated.   281,187 exams used digital mammography and 173,663 exams used digital mammography AND tomosynthesis.  The exams took place between 2010 and 2012 at 13 geographically diverse locations across the United States.


3D Mammography, also known as Tomosynthesis, allows the breast imaging radiologists to discover breast cancers that might be undetectable using conventional mammography.  This is especially useful for women with dense breast tissue, but it is of benefit to all women.

Tomosynthesis converts the digital breast images into a stack of very thin layers or slices that can be viewed as a 3D reconstruction of the breast.

In 2011, tomosynthesis was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to be used in combination with standard digital mammography for breast cancer screening.

Since March 2012, Breast Diagnostic Center has offered 3D Mammography for our patients.

“The technology gives radiologists the ability to identify and characterize individual breast structures and clearly see features which might be obscured in a traditional 2D mammogram by overlapping normal breast anatomy that may mimic or mask a tumor. Dense tissue and overlapping tissue structures may lead to false positive or false negative results with standard mammography.”

Many patients at Breast Diagnostic Center also report that 3D Mammography is less painful than conventional mammography.  3D Mammography takes the same length of time as conventional mammography.

Breast Cancer

“Breast cancer is a significant health problem and statistics indicate that one in eight women will develop the disease in her lifetime. The stage at which the cancer is discovered influences a woman’s chance of survival and annual mammography after the age of 40 enables physicians to identify the smallest abnormalities.

In fact, when breast cancer is detected early and confined to the breast, the five-year survival rate is 97 percent.”

“Breast cancers caught in the initial stages by mammography are more likely to be cured and are less likely to require chemotherapy or as extensive surgery,” said Dr. Plecha, who is also Assistant Professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. “This study shows that 3D mammography is a more effective screening tool, and we must make it accessible to all women.”

BDC offers 3D Mammograms to every patient. 


Learn more:

3D Mammography Movie

Newswire 1 (JAMA Article)

Newswire 2 (JAMA Article)

Newswire 3 (JAMA Article)

Newswire 4 (Radiology Article)

Radiology Society of North America Journal Article

New York Times

Wall Street Journal


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