Mammography

Success! Additional digital mammography machine benefits women in Milwaukie, Southeast Portland, and Clackamas County.
(Mammography Fund)
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Digital mammography, an advanced technology in breast screening, has been performed at Providence Milwaukie Hospital for several years. Radiologists who specialize in women’s imaging interpret all of our mammograms and, as needed, recommend appropriate follow-up care. Staff also work in collaboration with Providence Cancer Center to give patients access to nationally recognized breast cancer specialists.

And now thanks to the addition of a second digital mammography machine installed in August of 2011, PMH is able to schedule screenings much more quickly and women will no longer have to wait weeks for an initial exam or follow-up appointment. The improved service capacity of a second machine is thanks to the Providence Milwaukie Foundation’s mammography campaign. “The second machine represents peace of mind for a lot of women,” says Penny Wilson, PMH diagnostic imaging manager.

Screening is important
“A woman doesn’t always have symptoms,” says Michael Neuman, M.D., a diagnostic radiologist at Providence Milwaukie Hospital and Providence Portland Medical Center. “You can look and feel fine, and not know that there is a problem.

"Digital mammography can detect changes in the breast tissue up to two years earlier than a patient or health care provider can feel them,” Dr. Neuman notes. “Screening can find breast cancer early, allowing less-invasive treatment and saving lives.”

The facts
*The addition of a second digital mammography machine (installed in August of 2011) has increased our capacity to 700 to 800 exams per month. 
*We expect to see between 1000 to 1500 more patients a year for digital breast screenings.
*The additional machine has improved patient access and appointment availability.

Living the Providence Mission - Saving Lives

This campaign also establishes a fund for free mammography clinics for the uninsured in our community. Many local women are not receiving potentially lifesaving mammograms because of financial need. Thanks to a special one-time gift, we held our first free mammography clinic in 2009 and served 70 uninsured women. In 2010, this clinic served 81 women. Again in September of 2011, the clinic was able to provide 80 screenings to uninsured women, one of which test positive for breast cancer and she was treated at Providence Cancer Center.

Breast cancer facts
*One in eight women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. One in 33 women will die from the disease. When it comes to survival, early detection is the key.
*Digital mammography is vital in the early detection of breast cancer. A recent study found that this technology enhances accuracy in finding cancer in women younger than 50 and in women with dense breast tissue.
*With digital mammography, the images are immediately available and can be electronically enhanced.

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