Women's Imaging Suite
Even though the vast majority of breast lumps are noncancerous, when a suspicious area on a mammogram needs follow-up, it can be very distressing.
"Certainly there are many benign breast conditions that can cause lumps," says Radiologist and Chief of FMH Mammography Services Dr. Peter Kremers, "but the immediate fear for many women is 'I have breast cancer.' Waiting for the definitive diagnosis can be agonizing. Understandably, these women and their families want-- and deserve-- answers quickly."
The goal of The Women's Center Imaging Suite is to provide women with the most thorough, accurate and prompt evaluation possible. Because a radiologist will be onsite reading mammograms as they happen, women whose mammograms are normal will be able to leave that same day with a letter saying that no suspicious areas were noted, and encouraging them to return next year.
However, when the radiologist notes something on a mammogram that needs a closer look, the patient is introduced to the Imaging Navigator and the Imaging Care Coordinator.
The Imaging Navigator talks to the patient about the follow-up procedure that the radiologist is recommending, notifies her primary care provider, and schedules the appointment- sometimes for that same day. Meanwhile, the Imaging Care Coordinator, who is a Certified Nurse Practitioner, meets with the patient to answer any additional questions she might have, take a medical history and perform a brief physical exam if needed.
After the follow-up procedure, the patient makes an appointment with her care coordinators to return for her results, usually within three days.
Whether the diagnosis is a benign condition or breast cancer, the patient's Imaging Navigator and Care Coordinator will continue to guide her through her options, introducing her to the Oncology Navigator if necessary.
Keeping her care consistent, comprehensive and coordinated-and communicating with her every step of the way-is of utmost importance.
Without a doubt, waiting for results of any screening or diagnostic test is stressful.That's why The Women's Center Imaging Suite is committed to communicating results to all mammography patients as quickly and accurately as possible.