Browse Tag: mammograms

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Patients Share Positive Experiences at PCRMC Comprehensive Breast Center

Robin Wisdom had not had a mammogram in nearly 20 months.

So her primary care provider, Barbie Fulton, a family nurse practitioner (FNP) with the Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Medical Group who practices at the Dent Medical Clinic, helped Wisdom schedule a mammogram at PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center.

That turned out to be an important decision, as Wisdom’s care team at PCRMC discovered “something” during her mammogram. She was urged to get an ultrasound and a core needle biopsy, which confirmed that she has breast cancer.

“I remember a nurse named Tiffany…she held my hand through the core biopsy and consoled me,” says Wisdom, a Dent County resident. “I was treated with nothing but excellence at the Breast Center.”

The Tiffany she refers to is Tiffany Henry, RN, who serves as PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center coordinator.

Henry credits not only the innovative technology and wide variety of services offered at PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center but also the caring staff that makes the clinic such an exceptional facility.

“From start to finish, like our names says, we are a comprehensive breast center,” Henry says.

PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center, with convenient locations at the Medical Office Building in Rolla and at the Waynesville Medical Plaza, offers both screening and diagnostic mammograms, bone density screenings as well as stereotactic breast biopsies, which are less invasive than surgical biopsies.

In addition to traditional 2D mammograms, PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center has offered 3D digital breast tomosynthesis (or 3D mammograms), a state-of-the-art breast imaging technology, since the summer of 2016.

3D mammograms help decrease false-positive results, offer an increased rate of cancer detection when compared with traditional 2D mammography and allow radiologists to better visualize breast tissue, particularly in the case of dense breasts.

When Wisdom came in for her appointment at PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center in Rolla, in July 2018, she had a 3D mammogram. After her diagnosis of cancer was confirmed, her treatment plan began quickly. She first underwent a lumpectomy, a procedure to surgically remove a lump from the breast tissue. She also had two lymph nodes removed. PCRMC General Surgeon Dana Voight, MD, performed her surgery.

Wisdom is now under the care of Becky Witham, FNP, who specializes in medical oncology/hematology, at the PCRMC Delbert Day Cancer Institute (DDCI).

Wisdom says she felt her care team went above and beyond for her, whether it was during her surgery or while she has been receiving treatments at the DDCI, but nowhere was that more true than at PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center.

“I’m thankful we have care this close, and I don’t have to travel to Springfield, Columbia or St. Louis,” Wisdom says. “I would highly recommend anyone go to PCRMC’s Breast Center and the DDCI.”

Lisa Green, a Pulaski County resident and PCRMC patient, had a similar positive experience. Like Wisdom, Green says she likes that she does not have to travel far for care.

“I had been going to the Breast Center in Rolla for years, and after I saw that the Waynesville Medical Plaza was built (in 2015), I called to make an appointment,” Green says. She was told that she could have her screening mammograms take place at the Waynesville Medical Plaza.

Green has been going there ever since. “It’s just so convenient,” she says.

Green says her sister has had breast cancer twice, so Green was encouraged to get a mammogram because of her family history of the disease.

“The people are so nice and friendly,” Green says of the staff. “And they’re so thorough. They really take the time to explain things to you.” Green also says PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center is flexible with her schedule.

In addition to being caring, the staff at PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center are highly-trained and qualified.

“We even have a radiologist on-site who can consult with patients if they are experiencing issues,” says Henry.

In addition, the Phelps Regional Health Care Foundation, the philanthropic arm of PCRMC, provides mammograms and other services recommended by PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center at no cost to women who financially qualify through the Breast Center Mammography Fund. In 2017, that fund helped 115 patients.

The American College of Radiology recommends yearly mammograms for women starting at age 40.

Patients do not need a physician referral for a screening mammogram at the Comprehensive Breast Center. To make an appointment, please call Centralized Scheduling at (573) 458-7737.

To learn more about mammograms, breast self-exams and general breast health, call PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center at (573) 458-3100 or visit pcrmc.com.

breast cancer

October Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) is encouraging women age 40 and older to get their annual breast cancer screenings.

Every Friday in October, the PCRMC Comprehensive Breast Center is offering free 3-D mammograms to women who are at least age 40 and financially qualify. The Phelps Regional Health Care Foundation’s Breast Center Mammography Fund is covering the cost of 50 3-D mammograms.

The Comprehensive Breast Center has been offering 3-D mammograms since June 2016.

The 3-D mammogram takes about 26 projections of the breast, and PCRMC radiologists can view 1-millimeter slices to get a clearer view of dense breast tissue and detect any abnormalities.

Tiffany Henry, Comprehensive Breast Center coordinator, said there is a 30-40 percent higher detection rate with 3-D mammograms than 2-D mammograms. Mammograms take about 15-20 minutes.

Missouri ranks 42nd in the nation for women getting screening mammograms, Henry noted.

Breast cancer occurs when there is a fast growth of cells in the breasts that turn abnormal and usually cause a lump. Not all cases of breast cancer are alike, and there are different ways to treat breast cancer.

Some of the symptoms of breast cancer may include breast lumps, redness or swelling of the breasts, nipple retraction or nipple discharge, dimpling, changes in the skin of the breast and sometimes pain.

Non-invasive breast cancer occurs if the cell growth stays within the breast lobule or duct, said Carol Walter, nurse navigator with the Delbert Day Cancer Institute (DDCI). Once the growth goes outside that area, it becomes invasive.

 The stages of breast cancer depend on the tumor’s size, how many lymph nodes are affected and whether it has spread to other areas, such as the lungs, liver or bones.

“Don’t be afraid,” Walter advised women who may have concerns about getting mammograms. “So many women put it off because they are afraid of what they might find or that it will hurt.”

Henry recommends that women be self-aware about their breasts and what they normally look and feel like so that if an abnormality occurs, they are more likely to notice it and can let their provider know.

Walter said the older women get, the more likely they may get breast cancer.

To learn more about mammograms, breast self-exams and general breast health, call PCRMC’s Comprehensive Breast Center at 573-458-3100.