Request Appointment

Elevated Breast Imaging

3D Mammograms and Breast Cancer Screenings

Breast health is important and at Outpatient Diagnostic Center in Alabama, our caring staff uses the latest mammogram technology to provide comprehensive care from screening to diagnostic breast exams.

Outpatient Diagnostic Center of Alabama wants everyone to have easy access to their crucial screening exams. Review our available mammography appointments and choose the one that works best for you. It’s so easy, you can do it now!

Schedule Mammogram

Learn more about comprehensive breast imaging at ODC Alabama

What is a screening 3D mammography exam?

Mammography is specialized medical imaging that uses a low-dose x-ray system to visualize breast tissue. It aids in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women.

During a 3D mammogram multiple breast images are taken from different angles producing a series of one-millimeter thick slices that create a 3D image of the breast. This provides greater visibility for the radiologist to see breast detail, increasing the likelihood of spotting abnormalities and reduces call backs for additional images providing greater confidence in the results. In addition, 3D mammography finds cancers earlier than 2D mammography, when they are more successfully treated and more options for treatment are available. The very low X-ray energy used for 3D mammography is below the FDA guidelines.

Up to 40% of women have dense breast tissue that makes detection of breast cancers more difficult. The mammography results will notify you if you have dense breast tissue. Women with dense breasts may want to consider talking with their doctor about adding Automated Intelligence Breast Ultrasound their annual screening regimen.

What is a diagnostic 3D mammography exam?

A diagnostic mammogram is performed on the same machine, and in the same manner as a screening mammogram. A diagnostic mammogram is performed on patients who have symptoms such as pain, itching, swelling, palpable lump, discharge, etc. A patient whose screening mammogram detects areas of concern will also have additional images performed as a diagnostic mammogram.

In many cases, a diagnostic mammogram may also be used in conjunction with ultrasound to provide greater clarity of the breast tissue.

What is Breast Density?

While dense breast tissue is perfectly normal – affecting approximately 40 percent of the population – breast density cannot be felt and it is not related to breast size or firmness. It can only be seen on a mammogram.

Breast tissue is considered dense if there is a lot of fibrous or glandular tissue and not much fat. Fibrous and glandular tissue looks white on a mammogram, as does a possible tumor. This makes it difficult to tell the difference between a tumor and dense breast tissue on a mammogram.

Patients with dense breasts should consider talking with their doctor about additional screening exams such as Automated Intelligence Breast Ultrasound (AIBUS)

What is a breast ultrasound?

In certain cases, an ultrasound of the breast is performed in conjunction with diagnostic mammography. This exam is non-invasive and uses sound waves, rather than radiation, to produce images. The ultrasound technologist will move a wand coated in gel over the breast tissue to further examine areas of concern. The images produced can provide greater clarity in the evaluation of the breast tissue.

What is Automated Intelligence Breast Ultrasound (AIBUS)?

Automated intelligence breast ultrasound (AIBUS) Is a breast cancer screening tool specifically designed to help find cancers hidden in dense tissue, which may be missed by your annual mammography.

If you’ve been deemed having dense tissue, we will encourage an AIBUS exam which is different than a mammogram.

During this procedure, a thin layer of lotion is applied to the breast, then a scanner is firmly position on the breast to acquire the images, the exam takes about 15 minutes and provides clear 3D ultrasound imaging.

In addition to breast exams, many women may also benefit from a screening bone density exam. Bone loss can be caused by inherent traits, lifestyle choices and by certain health conditions or medications that are taken. Learn more about bone density exams.

What you should know

Answers to frequently asked questions.

The decision to have a mammogram is a personal one and is dependent upon age, family history, the density of breast tissue, and discussion with your physician. Ultimately – it’s your decision – you do not need a recommendation from a physician for a screening mammogram. In terms of age, research clearly shows that annual mammography and breast cancer screen should start at age 40 and it is strongly correlated with significant improvement in survival rates of breast cancer.

ODC Alabama understands that the cost of a breast cancer screening exam can be a concern. Our rates for both insured and uninsured patients are substantially lower than the same exam performed at a hospital. We believe that price transparency is important so you can be prepared for your financial obligations, if any. Most insurers cover standard screening mammograms at no additional cost to the patient. If you elect to have a 3D mammogram for breast cancer screening rather than a standard digital exam, there may be an additional charge depending upon your insurance. To learn more about what your exam may cost, please click here.

The radiologist will review the Mammogram and provide a diagnostic report that will be sent directly to your provider. The report of your breast cancer screening is typically available to your provider within 24 hours. Many providers plan scheduled time to discuss results with their patients so you could check with their office to see when they will be available to review the information with you.

Prep for your exam

If you have an appointment scheduled, please click here to pre-register, complete forms and review exam preparation instructions. If you have any questions about your visit, please contact Outpatient Diagnostic Center at 256.534.5600.