3D Mammograms Now Available on Wheels

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A new 3D mammography system will now provide women in rural North Louisiana an in-depth explanation to suspicious lumps.

The machine is one of only two 3D systems available in the state. The system is designed to be transported via a mobile cancer screening van unit from Partners in Wellness, which serves uninsured and underinsured residents. Feist-Weiller Cancer Center at LSU Health Shreveport operates the program through grants, donations, and funding collected from a foundation dedicated to cancer screening and care. 3D mammograms go mobile

“More precise images will give radiologists a better view of possible tumors and decrease the number of false positive results,” said Feist-Weiller cancer control and prevention director, Dr. Jerry McLarty.

“The van also has computers that can send the images to a radiologist right away for reading in cases where immediate diagnosis can make a life-or-death difference. The program’s older van will start visiting eastern Louisiana parishes along the Mississippi River. A lot of those parishes have no mammography anywhere,” he said. “Some don’t even have a clinic,” added McLarty.

Moreover, rural residents won’t be the only ones waiting outside the mobile van to receive 3D mammography screenings; but Partners in Wellness are scheduled to pay a visit to Martin Luther King Health Center in Shreveport once a month for the free clinic’s women’s health program; which can receive up to 20 women who get mammograms each month.

“We probably could fill it up more than that, but they are pretty booked up. It is a valuable service for our patients,” said health center director Janet Mentesane. 

Women at the center are set to receive a physical, pap smear and mammogram upon visitation. The health center can also manage mammogram services with partner agencies in other locations.

“It enables patients to have their annual women’s screening done in a one-stop shop, which is very convenient for our patients, who often have difficulty arranging transportation to multiple service points,” said Mentesane.

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