New scanning device gives doctors 3D image of breast to detect cancer

Mount Sinai Medical Center seeking patients to test technology

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Researchers are always looking for better ways to detect breast cancer, which can be especially difficult if you're a woman with dense breast tissue.  

But there's a new scanning device to detect the disease and South Florida doctors need help from patients to test it out.

Mammography is one of the best ways to find breast cancer, but the science isn't perfect.

That's especially true for women with dense breast tissue where tumors blend in.

Ultrasounds can help find those hidden masses, which is why doctors at Mount Sinai Medical Center are testing out the new device.  

They hope the SoftVue will take ultrasound to the next level by giving doctors a 3D image of the breast.

"Not only can we find things we might not see on a mammogram but, in addition, we might get more information than we get with a traditional ultrasound," Dr. Stuart Kaplan said. 

It works like this: The patient lies on her stomach as one breast at time is lowered into warm water. Using sound and circulating water, doctors get a unique breast image.

Raelene Mercer was quick to sign up for the SoftVue study.

The busy, single mom wanted to do whatever she can to stay healthy.

"Well, I'm a fan of technology and I think we need to discover new ways of breast imaging," she said. "And if there is something out there then I'm the first person to try it."

Mount Sinai Medical Center is one of eight facilities in the country testing out SoftVue. A couple hundred women have undergone the imaging in South Florida so far and doctors said the results are promising.

"If there's a mass, we can get info about the mass from four difference pieces of information, and put it together and say, this is likely to be malignant, and this is likely to be benign and somewhere in between," Kaplan said.

Mercer said the SoftVue technology gave her a little peace of mind.

"Because now we've done three stages -- a mammogram, ultrasound and now this additional testing," Mercer said. "It felt good to know everything is thoroughly checked."

Click here to learn more about SoftVue and how to take part in the study. 

About the Author:

Kristi Krueger has built a solid reputation as an award-winning medical reporter and effervescent anchor. She joined Local 10 in August 1993. After many years co-anchoring the 6 p.m. and 11 p.m., Kristi now co-anchors the noon newscasts, giving her more time in the evening with her family.