Digital Mammography - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/8/06

Digital Mammography

By now, most people know television is going digital but did you know so is mammography?

That means no more posting pieces of film onto light boxes. Instead, the information travels electronically and doctors can easily access the images from their office computers. But best of all, this new technology is saving lives. The software helps doctors more accurately diagnose breast cancer in women over age 50, women near menopause, and women who have dense tissue. The computer can even magnify the image to offer a better look.

"There has clearly been a documented improvement in breast cancer survival in the past 15 years and a good part of that has to do with advances in mammography. Once you go digital though you won't go back to film," said Dr. Donald Hulnick, a radiologist.

Dr. Hulnick says the only downside is that digital is more expensive. But when you consider it's saving lives, many would argue it's well worth the cost.

Digital mammography isn't here in Lubbock yet. But I talked to the folks at UMC and Covenant and both facilities say they are looking at switching over to digital mammography within 12 to 18 months.

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