Premier Health First Health System in Dayton to Offer 3D Mammography

DAYTON, OHIO (October 1, 2015) – The odds of beating breast cancer have never been better, thanks to advancements in early detection and treatment. Premier Health joins this fight by being the first health system in Dayton to provide 3D mammography, the latest enhancement in mammographic imaging. 

3D mammography, or Tomosyntheses, is a new screening and diagnostic test for breast cancer offering women and their physicians a more accurate way to detect the presence of breast abnormalities. 3D mammography is a significant advance in mammographic imaging, and is available at nearly all imaging facilities and hospitals across the Premier Health system.

Traditional technology, or 2D mammography, gives physicians two views of each breast from right angles, taken from the top and side of the breast. Breast tissue can sometimes overlap, creating an illusion that makes normal tissue appear abnormal, or possibly hiding potential issues. With 3D technology, multiple images from varying angles are taken, allowing the radiologist to see more clearly through the multiple layers of breast tissue. 

Early data suggests that 3D mammograms detect more cancers earlier, which means the cancers are smaller and often easier to treat. There is also greater accuracy in pinpointing size, shape, and location of abnormalities. This can result in finding cancers that might be missed with conventional 2D mammography. It also means less chance of being called back for more images.

“This new technology gives us more definitive results, as it removes superimposed distractions,” said Hugh Hawkins, MD, medical director of the Women’s Center at Atrium Medical Center. “If you can remove the dense tissue from in front of and behind the cancer, it will stand out, making diagnosis much easier.”

With 2D mammography, about five to 12 percent of women are called back for follow-up testing, which can result in false positives and unnecessary additional follow-up testing, including biopsies. The 3D technology has been found to reduce that number by 15 percent. “This means some women don’t need additional imaging, which reduces stress, false positives, and costs,” Dr. Hawkins said.

The radiation exposure with a 3D mammogram is well within the safe zone. The total radiation dose, even when both 2D and 3D images are obtained from the same mammogram, is below the limit under the Mammography Quality Standards Act (MQSA) set forth by the FDA. 

At this time, 3D mammograms must be requested by the patient, ordering physician, or radiologist. To find out if 3D mammography is available at a nearby Premier Health facility, Premier’s Central Scheduling can be contacted at (855) 887-7364. 

For more information about 3D mammography, visit

Contact Us

Discover more about Premier Health and join us in building healthier communities in Southwest Ohio. Learn more about working at Premier Health, becoming a volunteer, and making a gift to support our mission.