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October 1, 2008

New Digital Mammograms are Faster, more Accurate in Women Under 50

All Mammograms are Digital at Loyola Clinics in Maywood, Orland Park, Oakbrook Terrace, Darien and North Riverside

MAYWOOD -- Women who come to Loyola University Health System for mammograms are finding the new digital technology used at outpatient clinics is reducing exam times by at least half.

Older technology, still in use at many Chicago-area hospitals and clinics, produces film images, which doctors view on brightly lit view boxes. With the newer digital mammograms, doctors view high-resolution images on computer screens. All mammograms are digital at Loyola's Maywood campus and at Loyola clinics in Orland Park, Oakbrook Terrace, Darien and North Riverside. Mammograms also are digital at Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, which recently became part of the Loyola health system.

Exam times for digital mammograms are reduced by at least 50 percent because there is no waiting to develop film, said Dr. Kathleen A. Ward, medical director, women's health imaging.

With both film and digital mammograms, the breast is compressed and X-rays produce an image of the breast. Digital technology enables the interpreting radiologist to manipulate the image on a computer screen. The radiologist can then adjust the brightness, change contrast or zoom in for improved close-up evaluation. This capability helps the radiologist see tiny calcium deposits that could be an early sign of breast cancer.

According to a major multi-center study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, digital mammograms are more accurate than film mammograms in detecting cancer in women who are younger than 50, have dense breasts or are pre-menopausal.

The technologists who perform digital mammograms at Loyola all specialize in breast imaging, and it generally takes fewer than five days to schedule a screening mammogram at Loyola. To make an appointment, call 888-LUHS-888, extension 60170.















Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, Loyola University Health System is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and 22 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. The medical center campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of the Chicago Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. The heart of the medical center campus, Loyola University Hospital, is a 570-licensed bed facility. It houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as the LUC Stritch School of Medicine, the LUC Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Health & Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 250-bed community hospital, the Gottlieb Health & Fitness Center and the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Care Center.

About Loyola Medicine and Trinity Health

Loyola Medicine, a member of Trinity Health, is a quaternary care system based in the western suburbs of Chicago that includes Loyola University Medical Center (LUMC), Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, MacNeal Hospital and convenient locations offering primary and specialty care services from 1,877 physicians throughout Cook, Will and DuPage counties. LUMC is a 547-licensed-bed hospital in Maywood that includes the William G. and Mary A. Ryan Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine, the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, a Level 1 trauma center, Illinois's largest burn center, a certified comprehensive stroke center and a children’s hospital. Having delivered compassionate care for over 50 years, Loyola also trains the next generation of caregivers through its teaching affiliation with Loyola University Chicago’s Stritch School of Medicine and Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. Gottlieb is a 247-licensed-bed community hospital in Melrose Park with 150 physician offices, an adult day care program, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park. MacNeal Hospital is a 374-bed teaching hospital in Berwyn with advanced inpatient and outpatient medical, surgical and psychiatric services, advanced diagnostics and treatments. MacNeal has a 12-bed acute rehabilitation unit, a 25-bed inpatient skilled nursing facility, and a 68-bed behavioral health program and community clinics. MacNeal has provided quality, patient-centered care to the near west suburbs since 1919.

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic healthcare systems in the nation, serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states. Trinity Health includes 92 hospitals, as well as 109 continuing care locations that include PACE programs, senior living facilities and home care and hospice services. Its continuing care programs provide nearly 2.5 million visits annually. Based in Livonia, Mich., and with annual operating revenues of $18.3 billion and assets of $26.2 billion, the organization returns $1.1 billion to its communities annually in the form of charity care and other community benefit programs. Trinity employs about 129,000 colleagues, including 7,800 employed physicians and clinicians. Committed to those who are poor and underserved in its communities, Trinity is known for its focus on the country's aging population. As a single, unified ministry, the organization is the innovator of Senior Emergency Departments, the largest not-for-profit provider of home health care services—ranked by number of visits—in the nation, as well as the nation’s leading provider of PACE (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly) based on the number of available programs.

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