Photo by Sue WatsonAlliance department director Terry Leeks is pictured at the GE Logic S8 Ultrasound unit.
Photo by Sue WatsonAlliance Hospital staff technologist Megan Ford uses the Shimadzu Digital RadSpeed.
Radiology all digital at Alliance Hospital
A more comfortable mammography experience is now available at Alliance Hospital, according to radiology director and mammographer Terry Leeks.
The old film mammogram machine has been pushed aside. In its place is the newly-released, full-field, digital, two-dimensional mammography manufactured by GE Healthcare.
Alliance is now able to provide screening and diagnostic exams with same-day reports that are faxed to the patient’s physician. This is all possible due to the new digital technology, a new Picture Archiving System (PACS), and a new group of providing radiologists (Premier Radiology).
A woman does not have to go to her doctor to get an order for a mammogram at Alliance.
Alliance accepts self-referrals for screening mamograms. Ladies are encouraged make a mammogram a part of their annual wellness check, or better still, encourage her mother, daughter, sister, or friend to do the same and come in as a group.
Leeks recently arranged mammographies on Saturdays for working women and recently ran 14 screens before 1 p.m.
“The new mammography unit we have is the GE Healthcare Scenographic Pristina 2-D,” Leeks said.
The unit arrived in August and in time for Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October). Alliance accepts private insurance, Medicaid, and Medicare. A special discount is available with self-pay.
Free mammograms are available to qualified patients through the Susan G. Komen grant administered by Alliance Charitable Foundation and the Mississippi Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program.
To schedule an appointment or learn more about the programs contact Leeks at 662-362-8414.
The new GE digital reduces the time required to screen the breast tissue and most women experience less anxiety or nervousness with this new technology. Women are less likely to skip appointments or not look forward to having their annual mammogram using this new imaging unit.
GE designed the Pristina with the input and suggestions of women, Leek said. Their suggestions helped develop a more comfortable and esthetically pleasing breast imaging unit.
Mammograms at Alliance Hospital are sent immediately to Premier Radiology for interpretation.
“All our studies are read the same day and a report is sent to the physicain and a letter to the client.
Using the analog film technology, a screening and reading often takes a week to be sent to the client or their doctor.
All mammograms are read using the BiRad system:
• 0 - additional imaging is needed or a magnification of an area is desired.
• 1 - negative.
• 2 - benign.
• 3 - short-term followup recommended.
• 4 - biopsy recommended.
• 5 - highly suspicious for cancer: biopsy recommended.
With a 0 reading, the patient comes back for special views which can include spot magnification or compression, or a sonogram to help better determine whether the finding is going to fall into another category.
Alliance does not do biopsies of breast tissue, but will do a steriostatic ultrasound or ultrasound biopsy.
If a biopsy is required the patient’s physician will provide a referral to a facility that takes biopsies.
Several facilities in close proximity to Holly Springs can be recommended for biopsies.
One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, Leeks said.
“Early detection and knowing risk factors are key to survival of breast cancer,” she said.
Radiology all digital at Alliance
Over the past year, Alliance Hospital has updated all of its imaging equipment in its radiology department.
That includes the Shimadzu Mobile Dart for portable or bedside X-rays, equipment and imaging room, GE Bright Speed CT unit, a high-resolution GE Logiq S8 ultrasound unit, in addition to the 2-D mammography equipment.
The GE Ultrasound unit is used to produce echocardiograms, abdominal exams, OBGYN images, and vascular examination of the carotid arteries and extremities for blood clots.
AHS staffs its radiology department around the clock with dedicated, credentialed and experienced employees.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and October 19 is National Mammography Day.
Alliance will provide an educational display, refreshments and give-aways near the front entrance of the hospital at 1430 Highway 4 East in Holly Springs in celebration of National Mammography Day.
Team Alliance Hospital is registered again this year for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure and is raising funds at the October 27 event.