3D Mammography

EWBC was an early adopter of this groundbreaking technology by participating in landmark early clinical research that led to FDA approval for 3D mammography and widespread implementation of this new and exciting technology throughout the United States. EWBC was the first in our region to offer this technology to our patients since early summer of 2011. 3D mammography with C-View is available at all Elizabeth Wende Breast Care (EWBC) offices demonstrating our commitment to offer the latest technology to our patients.

Recently, Hologic, a company specializing in medical imaging systems, developed a new 2D imaging software called C-View, to accompany the 3D mammogram. The software allows 3D mammography to reconstruct 2D images from the 3D data set. By doing this, patients are able to have an exam that averages around 3.7 seconds per view and allows patients to be more comfortable than with traditional 2D mammography.  C-View is a computerized imaging system that eliminates the need for additional images through 3D mammography. Fewer images means a woman spends less time with her breast compressed and receives less radiation. The greatest advantage of C-View is the low dose and that means that we decrease the dose by 40 percent. That's a lower dose than a woman who flies across the country, New York to L.A. round trip.

A mammogram offering higher breast cancer detection

  • Better visualization of breast tissue using 3D image slices
  • Beneficial for ALL patients, especially those with:
    – dense breast tissue
    – a higher risk of cancer
  • No additional radiation compared to 2D digital mammogram


Why is 3D mammography a better option?

How does a mammogram with 3D differ from a traditional 2D mammogram?

Does 3D mammography expose me to more radiation?

Can I have a mammogram with 3D?

Who reads my 3D mammogram?

How much does 3D mammography cost?

Download a 3D mammography brochure


Why is 3D mammography a better option?

The 3D nature of 3D mammography allows for the technology to reduce overlapping structures in the breast from obscuring small masses that could be cancers. 3D Mammography can be performed just like the standard 2D mammogram with similar compression. The radiologist has a more accurate view of the breast without overlapped tissue that sometimes masks a suspicious area. The 3D mammography exam has been shown to reduce callbacks for additional testing by as much as 50% and has also been proven in recent studies to detect more breast cancers. 3D mammogrpraphy is also beneficial to patients considered to be high risk for breast cancer and those with dense breast tissue. 

The 3D mammography experience is similar to a traditional mammogram and the 3D mammography system is identical in appearance to a standard 2D digital mammography system. The 3D imaging occurs as the digital exam is being performed, adding no additional time to your visit. The 3D mammography experience is similar to a traditional mammogram and the 3D system is identical in appearance to a standard 2D digital mammography system. The 3D imaging occurs with a single breath hold adding no additional time to your visit. Multiple images are obtained of each breast as the x ray tube moves over each breast. These are processed and then interpreted on a computer workstation by the radiologist.

When performing a combination exam, the technologist positions you and compresses the breast in the same way she routinely would for a 2D mammogram, the scanner rotates partially around the breast and takes multiple low dose images from many different angles. The number of images produced is dependent on the size of the breast. The radiologist then views these thin (1mm) layers on a computer workstation allowing the entire thickness of the breast to be viewed without the limitations of overlapping breast structures.

In a standard 2D mammogram, only two images of each breast are obtained. To view a specific area in either breast, additional mammographic views have to be taken to disperse the breast tissue that may be preventing a more complete evaluation of either breast. With 3D mammography, the radiologist has a series of images to view which leads to a greater ability to accurately diagnose subtle masses or abnormalities.

Does a 3D mammography expose me to more radiation?

The 3D imaging technology with sophisticated computer programs has recently developed the ability to assemble the multiple 3D slices into a single 2D image. This allows 2D and 3D mammogram images to be available for the radiologist to interpret for every patient that has the exam without adding more radiation. Due to this advancement, a 3D mammogram exposes you to equal the radiation as a standard 2D digital screening mammogram.

Can I have a 2D mammogram with 3D mammography?

Almost all patients who need a screening or diagnostic mammogram can have DBT. The EWBC staff is more than happy to discuss 3D mammography with you, either by phone prior to or at the time of your scheduled appointment. Ask our highly trained technologists when you visit one of our facilities for your mammogram.

Who reads my 3D mammogram?

After your 3D mammogram is complete our physicians, (radiologists with subspecialty training in breast imaging and 3D mammography) will interpret your images. You will receive your results at the end of your visit if you stay for your results, or within a few days if you prefer not to wait for your results. A copy of the report is sent to your physician(s).

How much does 3D mammography cost?

3D Mammography was approved by FDA in February 2011. As of 2015, most insurance carriers consider 3D mammography a covered service, and will reimburse for some portion of the service. Depending on your plan, your insurance may cover all or a portion of the payment. The patient is then responsible for the balance.

This page is intended as an educational resource only. It is not a substitute for professional care. Please see your physician if you have any concerns about your own health.