Breast Ultrasound

breast ultrasound

At the Jim & Eleanor Randall Breast Center, breast ultrasounds are performed as part of our multimodality approach to breast care. Breast ultrasound, also known as sonography, is an imaging method in which high-frequency sound waves are used to outline a part of the body. High-frequency sound waves above the level of hearing are transmitted through the area of the body being studied. The sound wave echoes are picked up and translated by a computer into an image that is displayed on a computer screen. No radiation exposure occurs during this test.

Some studies have suggested that breast ultrasound be considered in screening women with dense breast tissue (which is difficult to evaluate by routine mammography). But, use of screening breast ultrasound instead of mammography is not recommended because small calcium deposits, which may be the earliest signs of breast cancer, are not visible by breast ultrasound. Breast ultrasound is useful for evaluation of some breast masses in addition to mammography, and is the only way to tell if a cyst is present without placing a needle into it to aspirate the fluid. Cysts cannot be accurately diagnosed on physical examination alone. Breast ultrasound may also be used to help doctors precisely guide a biopsy needle into some breast lesions.