Skip to main content

  Receive Abbott Northwestern Hospital; United Hospital; WestHealth; Piper Breast Center; Virginia Piper Cancer Institute news via RSS feed Receive Abbott Northwestern Hospital; United Hospital; WestHealth; Piper Breast Center; Virginia Piper Cancer Institute news via RSS feed.


For Immediate Release

For more information, contact:
Gloria O'Connell, 612-863-4801


Allina Health offers 3-D mammography at three Twin Cities' breast centers

MINNEAPOLIS 08/05/2014--Allina Health has introduced a new mammography screening and diagnostic tool called digital breast tomosynthesis at United and Abbott Northwestern hospitals and Abbott Northwestern – WestHealth.

Halogenic vendor stock phot of 2D and 3D breast images A three-dimensional (3-D) mammogram is done in conjunction with a two-dimensional (2-D) digital mammogram. During a 3-D exam, multiple low dose images of the breast are taken at different angles.

These images are used to produce a series of one-millimeter thick slices that can be viewed as a 3-D reconstruction of the breast. This allows radiologists to view the breast tissue layer by layer, without the confusion of overlapping tissue.

While 2-D digital mammography is still the standard of care for breast cancer screening, breast tomosynthesis is an option for screening or diagnostic mammography.

"We are very excited to be able to offer this excellent screening exam. It's important to provide women with the highest level of care, and digital breast tomosynthesis has a higher cancer detection rate than 2D mammography alone," said Tara Bowman, MD, a breast radiologist at United Breast Center. "It will also reduce the number of patients who need to come back for additional images, which can be stressful."

Bowman said 3-D mammography is beneficial in all women, but may be most helpful in women with dense breast tissue, women at high risk for breast cancer or women with a personal history of breast cancer.

Breast tomosynthesis is approved by the FDA, but most insurance companies are not yet reimbursing for this exam.

People who want more information may contact United Breast Center at the Virginia Piper Cancer Institute® —United Hospital in St. Paul at 651-241-8300, Piper Breast Center® – Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis at 612-863-3150, or Piper Breast Center® — WestHealth in Plymouth at 763-577-7676.

About Virginia Piper Cancer Institute, part of Allina Health

The Virginia Piper Cancer Institute provides comprehensive care through all aspects of cancer prevention, early detection and treatment to help individuals maintain quality of life and find ways to live with and beyond cancer. Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. For more information about Allina Health, visit our website at and join us on Facebook and Twitter.

# # #