Women's Imaging Center

The Women's Imaging Centers at Trinity Moline and Trinity Bettendorf are recognized as Breast Imaging Centers of Excellence by the American College of Radiology (ACR). In order to receive the ACR's Breast Imaging Center of Excellence designation, a center must be accredited in Mammography, Stereotactic Breast Biopsy and Breast Ultrasound, including the Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy module. Click here to visit our Breast Health Center.

Digital Mammography

The Women's Imaging Center utilizes state of the art digital mammography. Digital mammography uses computers and specially designed digital detectors to produce an image that is displayed on a high-resolution computer monitor and stored just like computer files. From a patient's point of view, having a digital mammogram is very much like having a conventional screen-film mammogram. Digital mammography uses compression and x-rays to create clear images of the inside of the breast. During all mammography exams, the technologist positions the patient to image the breast from different angles and compresses the breast to obtain optimal image quality. Compression may sometimes be slightly uncomfortable, but it is extremely important in the separation of breast tissue to enable the radiologist to make a conclusive diagnosis.

Unlike film-based mammography, digital mammograms produce images that appear on the monitor in a matter of seconds - no waiting for films to be developed. When the radiologist views the images he/she can adjust the brightness, change contrast, and zoom in for close-ups of specific areas of interest. Being able to manipulate images is one of the main benefits of digital technology.  Click here for Breast Screening Guidelines.

Bone Densitometry

Bone density scanning, also called dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry or bone densitometry, is an enhanced form of low dose x-ray technology that is used to measure bone loss. Bone densitometry is today's established standard for measuring bone mineral density.

Bone densitometry is most often used to diagnose osteoporosis, a condition that often affects women after menopause but may also be found in men. Osteoporosis involves a gradual loss of calcium, as well as structural changes, causing the bones to become thinner, more fragile and more likely to break.

The bone densitometry test can also assess an individual's risk for developing fractures. The risk of fracture is affected by age, body weight, history of prior fracture, family history of osteoporotic fractures and life style issues such as cigarette smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.

Breast Biopsy

Lumps or abnormalities in the breast are often detected by physical examination, mammography, or ultrasound. However, it is not always possible to tell from these imaging tests whether a growth is benign or cancerous.

A breast biopsy is performed to remove cells, both surgically or through a less invasive procedure involving a hollow needle from a suspicious area in the breast and examined under a microscope to determine a diagnosis. Image-guided or ultrasound-guided needle biopsy is not designed to remove the entire lesion.

Stereotactic Image Guided Biopsy

In stereotactic breast biopsy, a special mammography machine uses ionizing radiation to help guide the radiologist's instruments to the site of the abnormal growth. A stereotactic breast biopsy is performed when a mammogram shows a breast abnormality such as:

  • A suspicious solid mass
  • Microcalcifications, a tiny cluster of small calcium deposits
  • A distortion in the structure of the breast tissue
  • An area of abnormal tissue change
  • A new mass or area of calcium deposits present at a previous surgery site

Ultrasound-Guided Biopsy

An ultrasound-guided breast biopsy can be performed when a breast ultrasound shows an abnormality such as:

  • A suspicious solid mass
  • A distortion in the structure of the breast tissue
  • An area of abnormal tissue change

There are times when your doctor may decide that ultrasound guidance for biopsy is appropriate even for a mass that can be felt.

In ultrasound-guided breast biopsy, an ultrasound machine utilizes an ultrasound probe to visualize the location of the breast lump. The radiologist inserts a biopsy needle through the skin, advances it into the mass and removes tissue samples. With continuous ultrasound imaging, the radiologist is able to view the biopsy needle or wire as it advances to the location of the lesion in real-time.

Ultrasound

Ultrasound imaging involves exposing part of the body to high-frequency sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of the body. Because ultrasound images are captured in real-time, they can show the structure and movement of the body's internal organs, as well as blood flowing through blood vessels.

Ultrasound examinations can help to diagnose a variety of conditions and to assess organ damage following illness and can help evaluate symptoms such as pain, swelling and infection. The ultrasound department and equipment at Trinity have achieved accreditation for quality by the American College of Radiology (ACR).