Automated breast ultrasound (ABUS) is a powerful tool our radiologists use to comprehensively assess your breasts’ health and diagnose early signs of breast cancer. Take control of your health and book an appointment with our team today.
ABUS is a screening tool that uses ultrasound technology to create 3D images of your breast tissue. With dense breast tissue, mammograms have a tougher time detecting cancer because the dense tissue can hide the abnormality.
By creating 3D ultrasound images, radiologists can look through hundreds of breast image “slices,” looking at layers of dense tissue to find breast cancers which may have been missed on a mammogram. This is different than routine breast ultrasound since the images from ABUS allow us to see in projections that routine ultrasound cannot.
When mammography and ABUS are combined for screening in dense breasts, the cancer detection rates can be as much as 37.5% higher than with mammography alone.
ABUS imaging is quick and comfortable, completed in as little as 15 minutes. Before you come in for your appointment, please ensure you are wearing a removable top and that you are not wearing any jewelry that could affect the ABUS images.
If you are also having a mammogram, you may be asked to avoid the use of deodorant.
When you are brought into our exam room, you will need to remove your top and lay down on the exam table. Lying down, our technologist will apply an ultrasound gel over your breast to help our ABUS device capture the clearest images possible.
The ABUS transducer will then be placed over the top of your breast using light pressure. ABUS uses high-frequency sound waves to create its images, therefore you will not be exposed to any ionizing radiation. Once one breast is examined, we will perform the same process on the other breast.
After the appointment, the radiologist will review all the images, compare them to any previous breast imaging you’ve had and send a report to your doctor within 1 business day. If we have urgent information, we will get in touch with your doctor on the same day.
Dense breast tissue is a common finding in women and is not a cause for concern. However, it can make it more difficult for doctors to detect breast cancer signs during a mammogram. In these cases, your doctor may refer you to our team for an ABUS exam.
Breast tissue is made of milk glands and ducts, supportive (dense) tissue, and fatty tissue. Density is measured by a system called Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS), and breaks density up into 4 different categories:
Increased breast density is more common in younger women, but any woman can have dense breasts at any age. Women who take hormone therapy for menopause or have a lower body mass index may have a higher chance of having dense breasts.
About 50% of women have C or D level density, and further breast cancer screening may be recommended.
Ask your doctor about your breast density and if you would benefit from ABUS today!