John C. Lincoln Breast Health and Research Center
19646 N. 27th Ave., Suite 205
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Call 623-780-HOPE (4673) to schedule a breast MRI in Phoenix
The John C. Lincoln Breast Health and Research Center is proud to be among the few breast centers in Phoenix that perform both breast MRI and breast MRI biopsy procedures.
In fact, our center has taken great measures to provide a breast MRI system that balances image quality, diagnostic accuracy and patient comfort. Likewise, our dedicated breast specialists are experts in performing breast MRI and reading breast MRI images.
Here, our Breast Health and Research Center staff explains how they use breast MRI as a diagnostic tool, and how the technology can benefit patients who need breast biopsy.
What is breast MRI?
In breast MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging, a radiologist will use a scanner to capture many cross-sectional images of the breast. A computer will compile these scans into 2-D and 3-D images.
During the imaging process, contrast dye is given intravenously, to highlight lesions and masses that otherwise may not be visible in a mammogram.
Breast MRI is not a routine procedure for breast cancer screening. It is used in very special cases. It is not used instead of a mammogram — it is used in support of a mammogram.
Why might a patient need breast MRI?
A breast MRI can be helpful in many situations. A patient may have very dense breasts, may be at a high genetic risk for breast cancer or may have a family history of breast cancer. In these cases, a breast MRI can give us information that a mammogram cannot.
If a patient already is diagnosed with breast cancer, we'll use breast MRI to ensure that other areas of the breast do not have a cancer. In that sense, it can help us plan a patient's surgery appropriately.
What is special about the breast MRI system at John C. Lincoln?
At John C. Lincoln Breast Health and Research Center in Phoenix, breast MRI is performed with a Signa Vibrant HDx and Vanguard Breast Table from GE Healthcare. These advanced machines are designed specifically for breast care. Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, is the best way to detect cancer in dense tissue, and the table is designed to be more comfortable.
One of the features of our dedicated breast MRI system is our Sentinelle table. It's designed to make MRI exams much more comfortable. A patient will lie face down, with breasts positioned against cushioned, and comfortable, MRI coils. These emit the radiofrequencies that make the MRI possible.
The system guides the patient in and out of the scanner feet-first. In other words, the patient's head will stick out of the machine, so that she won't feel claustrophobic.
Even though our system can scan other body parts — which can help for diagnosing the spread of cancer to other parts of the body — it is specifically designed to perform breast MRI. We also invested in a supplemental package that eliminates false positives from images.
Overall, the quality of the scans is amazing. What's more, we have dedicated breast specialists who are experts in breast MRI and reading breast MRI.
Do you also provide breast MRI biopsy?
Yes. This is a very important point. At John C. Lincoln, we can provide the breast MRI as well as breast MRI biopsy.
Many breast centers in Phoenix offer breast MRI, but they do not have breast MRI biopsy capability. In effect, they must send their patients elsewhere for a breast biopsy.
This raises an important consideration. When you perform a breast MRI on one machine, and perform a breast MRI biopsy on another, you are bound to encounter varied levels of imaging capabilities. The two machines simply will not be the same.
By contrast, at John C. Lincoln Breast Health and Research Center, we use one machine for MRI and MRI biopsy. Our patients have an added convenience, and our dedicated breast radiologists have the clearest, most accurate images possible.