Humberside Breast Screening Service recently purchased two Philips MicroDose mammography units for its breast screening programme, the first of which has recently been installed at Health Central in Hull, East Yorkshire. Health Central is an ‘integrated healthy living centre’ offering a range of lifestyle, public engagement and screening opportunities. It is based in St. Stephen’s shopping centre in Hull, which has good public transport links and parking at the shopping centre. Although an unusual setting for a breast screening site, it is excellent for the local women as they have easy access and is a less stressful environment.
Commenting on the new system, which replaced an existing mammography unit, Ann-Marie Taylor, Superintendent Radiographer says, “We chose the Philips system for its quick and easy imaging and also for the fact that its radiation dose for a mammography exam is the lowest on the market today. We have been able to re-organise our screening room and remove an obsolete processing unit, so that we are now able to alter our appointments to six minutes rather than the seven minutes previously used, and as a result, we have increased our capacity at this location.”
The system, Philips MicroDose L30 Full Field Digital Mammography (FFDM) unit, is the first in the UK to be installed under the Philips branding. It comes with Philips’ MicroDose patented photon-counting detector which utilises less radiation, while delivering excellent image quality. MicroDose Smart AEC continuously adjusts radiation exposure depending on the density of the breast. This provides a totally automated correct exposure without the need for pre-exposures, AEC adjustment or specific positioning.
Ann-Marie goes on, “We are finding the system very patient and mammographer friendly and particularly like the excellent image quality we are obtaining. Using the new equipment, we are expecting a higher cancer detection rate in young women or those with dense breasts. This is our first Philips MicroDose system, but we may, looking to the future, investigate using the machine for osteoporosis screening”
MicroDose L30 comes with a number of benefits. Its ergonomic design means that together with its ease-of-use, the stress on the user is minimised, with the whole procedure, including image acquisition, taking less than five minutes. It delivers high-quality breast images at a significant reduction in dose as compared to other FFDM systems with no compromise on image quality. Its unique curved breast support facilitates easier positioning, while the warm surface and slim profile helps patients relax and ensures optimum positioning. In addition, a specially-designed paddle assists in the imaging of petite women.