Breast Center Offers New Ultrasound System to Detect Breast Cancer

The Sheila R. Veloz Breast Center has added another cutting-edge tool to its arsenal of advanced diagnostic and treatment technologies to detect breast cancer—an automated breast ultrasound system (ABUS).
The Invenia ABUS is designed to help doctors find cancers hidden in dense breast tissue that may be missed by mammography. It’s estimated that about 40 percent of women have dense breast tissue. When used in addition to mammography, the system can improve breast cancer detection by 55 percent over mammography alone, according to ABUS maker GE Healthcare.

“We’re proud to be the only facility in the Santa Clarita, San Fernando and Antelope valleys to offer this new technology in addition to the latest digital mammography,” said the center’s director, Terry Bucknall, CRA, FAHRA. She added that since the system was acquired in September 2017, nearly 200 ultrasounds have been performed. 

Previously, the center offered only hand-held ultrasound screenings, which required it to “rely on a technologist to not only get the images, but interpret them. ABUS screenings give us images of the entire breast so we can interpret them for ourselves,” said Anjali Date, MD, a radiologist at the breast center.

ABUS uses sound waves to create 3-D pictures of the breast tissue. Before screening, a thin layer of lotion is applied to the breast. The patient then lies down on an exam table, where the scanner is positioned to capture the needed images. The entire process takes about the same amount of time as a mammogram.  

“ABUS does not replace screening mammography,” said Bucknall. “It is used as an additional screening tool for patients with dense breast tissue.” IYH

​ABUS screenings are covered by most healthcare insurance plans and must be ordered by a doctor. For more information about the screening or other services, contact the Sheila R. Veloz Breast Center, a service of Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital, at (661) 200-1099 or visit our website