CHC: 3-D Screening/Diagnostic Mammography

Technicians Jennifer Dugan and Suzanne Quick. Submitted photo.


Each October, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month serves as a reminder to women to be diligent about breast cancer screening.

Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas (CHC/SEK) is proud to offer 3-D screening and diagnostic mammography and breast ultrasound services at their Fort Scott location, 401 Woodland Hills Blvd. Mammography services are available to everyone, whether they are a CHC/SEK patient or not.

Women 40 years old and older should begin annual mammograms to help detect breast cancer. Appointments at CHC/SEK are offered five days a week with extended hours to accommodate busy schedules.

CHC/SEK’s Fort Scott mammography program is accredited by the American College of Radiology and is inspected annually by the FDA. Technicians Jennifer Dugan and Suzanne Quick bring over 30 years of combined, dedicated service to mammography and take great pride in the work they do.

“There are often barriers to why women don’t get the mammograms they need, says Dugan and Quick. “We work closely with Kansas Early Detection Works (EDW), which can provide free and low-cost breast and cervical cancer screenings, and, at CHC/SEK, no one is denied services based on ability to pay.”

Where there are language barriers, CHC/SEK has interpreter services available.

For those with transportation issues, the health center can assist patients with rides to and from their appointment.

Dugan and Quick take special pride that for diagnostic mammography, they can offer same-day breast ultrasound with results before patients leave, so there is no “wait and worry.”

Dugan explained, “When a patient comes for a diagnostic mammogram (a diagnostic exam is performed when a patient has a breast problem such as lump, pain, etc.), we take our images, send to our radiologist via the computer for review, all while the patient is waiting. If the radiologist recommends a breast ultrasound, we then take the patient directly over for a breast ultrasound to be performed. Those images are also sent to the same radiologist. When he responds with a recommendation, we relay this to the patient while they are here with us. If the patient has a negative result, we then let them know. Suppose the patient has a positive result that needs further evaluation; in that case, we talk with the patient about their options and try to help get this arranged as quickly as possible.

Unfortunately, most facilities have lag times between the diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound if needed. When the ultrasound is performed, they will send the patient home to wait for the provider to receive the report, and the patient is the last to know when they are called by phone or sent a letter. We do not want our patients having multiple appointments and worrying while awaiting results…we think our process ensures that we are giving the best patient care possible!”

Patients at CHC/SEK benefit from the latest 3D Genius Technology at no additional cost. 3D mammography is an advanced technology that takes creates a 3-dimensional picture of the breast.

Women with dense breast tissue, in particular, may benefit because it provides a clearer picture. Using 3D mammography makes it easier for doctors to detect breast cancer early and reduces the chances of doctors seeing a false positive.

If you have questions about breast health or would like to schedule a mammogram, please call Jenny or Suzanne at the CHC/SEK Mammography Department at 620-223-8484.

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