Santa Monica–UCLA Medical Center and Orthopaedic Hospital has always tried to remain on the cutting edge of medicine and its new Women’s Imaging Center continues that tradition.
The new facility, located at 1260 15th Street, Suite 111, in Santa Monica, houses the latest state-of-the-art imaging technology in a spa-like setting designed exclusively for women. The 5,200 square-foot facility contains the latest in digital mammography technology, which according to Imaging Center Radiologist Anne Hoyt M.D., delivers the most sensitive breast images. These images make it easier for physicians to diagnosis breast problems because they can “manipulate the image to optimize the visualization of the breast.”
Digital mammography’s sensitivity is also very helpful for women with denser breasts, in young women, or for those women who are near menopause (peri-menopausal).
This new center also contains a Seimens 3-T Verio MRI which has a wider opening to prevent women from feeling claustrophobic during an MRI exam. Other facilities include four ultra-sound rooms, a conference room for classes and meetings, an image reading room (interpretive room), and four dressing rooms.
According to Hoyt, the typical screening mammography usually takes about 20 minutes while more in depth diagnostic procedures can take up to two hours. Other procedures that will be performed at the center are image-guided biopsies, ultrasound and MRI studies, and imaging of the heart, hip or uterine fibroids.
This center also contain facilities for long-term storage of images. Copies of images can be made for those women who need them.
The American Cancer Society (ACS) website states, “yearly mammograms are recommended (for women) starting at age 40 and continuing for as long as a woman is in good health.” In addition, a clinical breast exam should be part of a periodic health exam, about every three years for women in their 20’s and 30’s, and every year for those women 40 and over.
Other ACS guidelines include making sure all women know how their breasts feel, and report any changes promptly to their health care providers. Lastly, women who are at higher risk due to genetics or other factors should talk with their doctor about adding having an MRI screening in addition to their yearly mammogram.
Low-cost mammography is also available at the center to those women that are either uninsured or under insured from funds raised from the hospital’s Westside Challenge to Beat Breast Cancer campaign.
The previous hospital Women’s Imaging Center located at 1245 16th Street will no longer be in operation. One to two radiologists will be available at the new site on a daily basis.
Immediate appointments, including same-day appointments, are available by calling 310.301.6800.