State-of-the-art breast imaging center in Rochester, New Hampshire
Frisbie Memorial Hospital’s Breast Imaging Center provides comprehensive breast care services, from prevention planning and screenings to advanced diagnostics, including groundbreaking 3D mammogram and breast biopsy technology designed to make breast imaging faster, less invasive and more comfortable than a conventional stereotactic breast biopsy.
We offer full-service breast imaging services, including:
- Digital mammography
- 3D mammograms
- Breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Bone density testing
- Breast biopsy
- Stereotactic and ultrasound biopsy
Breast health services
Your breast health starts with annual mammogram screenings and a breast cancer risk assessment. Our experienced imaging specialists work together to provide breast screening services to help save more lives by detecting breast cancer early.
A 3D mammogram (also known as tomosynthesis) allows your doctor to examine breast tissue one layer at a time. The 3D images also allow fine details within the breast tissue to be more visible, making it easier to detect a tumor early. 3D mammography can show changes in breast tissue two years before it can be felt. This allows for early diagnoses and treatment when breast cancer is most curable. While ultrasound cannot detect tiny changes indicating early breast cancer, it is an effective modality alongside mammography.
A screening mammogram is your annual mammogram done every year. Sometimes, the radiologist may ask you to come back for follow-up images, called a diagnostic mammogram, to rule out an unclear area in the breast. Additionally, if there is a breast complaint or concern (such as a lump) that needs to be evaluated, you'll have a diagnostic mammogram.
Benefits of 3D mammograms
We are proud to offer 3D mammography and its many benefits to our patients, including:
- Increased breast cancer detection rates
- Earlier detection of breast cancers
- Clearer images
- Reduced need for unnecessary biopsies, minimizing patient anxieties and costs
3D mammograms are recommended for patients who have:
- Dense breast tissue
- Family history of breast cancer or previous breast cancer diagnosis
- Previous mammogram results that were inconclusive
- Previously been called back for repeat breast scans
- Undergone biopsies for suspicious masses or lesions in the past
How to prepare for your mammogram
To prepare for your mammogram:
- Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment to allow for registration.
- Be prepared to remove your top and bra. You will be provided a comfortable robe that will cover you from the hips up.
- Please do not wear jewelry, deodorant, powder, or perfume. These substances can cause a shadow to appear on your images.
- Please bring your insurance card, physician referral (if required) and personal identification.
- If you have had a prior mammogram at another facility, please request a copy of your images to be sent to the Breast Imaging Center at Frisbie Memorial Hospital, or bring the disk with you to your appointment. It is important for the radiologist to compare prior images to your current images to determine if there have been any changes since your last mammogram.
What to expect during your mammogram
During your mammogram the technologist will place one breast on a "tray" that raises or lowers during the procedure, depending upon your height. Then, they position your breast, head, arms and torso to get the best test results.
Your breast is then pressed against the tray by a clear plate. You'll feel some pressure for a few seconds as your breast tissue is spread out. Most women find it uncomfortable but not necessarily painful. If you have too much discomfort, please tell the technologist. You will be asked to hold your breath for a few seconds as the image is taken.
Bone density testing
The primary purpose of bone density testing is to detect osteoporosis. This condition involves a gradual loss of calcium, causing the bones to become thinner, more fragile, and more likely to break. The test is also used to assess your risk for developing fractures or track the effects of treatment for osteoporosis or other conditions that cause bone loss.
Osteoporosis often affects women after menopause but may also be found in men.
What to expect during your bone density test
A bone density test is simple, painless and takes about 20 minutes. It uses an enhanced form of X-ray technology known as DEXA (dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry) to determine the mineral density of bones and make an accurate diagnosis.
During the procedure, you lie on a cushioned table while a scanner passes over your body. A radiologist interprets your exam, and test results are sent to your ordering physician.
Breast cancer symptoms
Breasts differ in size, shape and density, and often, one breast will be slightly different from its partner. Also, events such as pregnancy and monthly menstrual cycles can change the size and tenderness of the breasts.
Know what is normal for your body. If you detect any of the following signs, don’t delay seeing a doctor:
- Lump or mass in the breast
- Lump or mass in the armpit
- Breast skin changes, including skin redness and thickening of the breast skin, resulting in an orange-peel texture
- Dimpling or puckering on the breast
- Discharge from the nipple
- Scaliness on the nipple, which sometimes extends to the areola
- Nipple changes, including the nipple turning inward, pulling to one side or changing direction
- An ulcer on the breast or nipple, sometimes extending to the areola
- Swelling of the breast
Breast cancer in men
Although male breast cancers are rare (less than 1 percent of breast cancers), the incidence rate has increased by .8 percent annually from 1975 to 2008. It is not recommended for men to participate in screening mammography, but a self-exam is appropriate.
Breast cancer risk factors
There are factors you can and cannot control in terms of developing breast cancer. Some factors increasing your breast cancer risk are:
- Family history of breast, ovarian or prostate cancer
- Older age
- Having your first period before 12 years old
- High bone density
- A male family member diagnosed with breast cancer
- Personal history of breast or ovarian cancer
- Positive test for specific gene mutations
- Previous biopsy showing atypical hyperplasia or cancer
- Prior radiation for childhood cancer
- Starting menopause after 55 years old
Some controllable risk factors can increase the likelihood of developing breast cancer, such as:
- Being exposed to a large amount of radiation
- Being overweight
- High levels of estrogen in the blood
- Not breastfeeding
- Having children or having your first child at 35 years old or older
- Postmenopausal hormone use
- Taking birth control pills for five years or longer
Guidelines for early detection
At EIRMC, breast cancer prevention is a priority. While we offer screening options, self-examinations are essential to ongoing breast care. They can lead to the early detection of abnormalities. The American College of Radiology recommends the following guidelines for who should receive a breast cancer screening:
- Women who are 40 to 44 years old should have annual mammograms as a breast cancer screening
- Women between 45 and 54 years old should get mammograms every year
- Women are who 55 years old and older should have mammograms every two years or continue yearly screening
Frisbie Memorial Hospital’s Breast Imaging Center is located on-site at:
11 Whitehall Road
Rochester, NH 03867
Frisbie Hospital blog
February 07, 2022 - It is recommended that women age 40 and older receive an annual screening mammogram.