McFarland Clinic

Breast Imaging

Breast Imaging Center of ExcellenceMcFarland Clinic Breast Imaging combines imaging technology with instruction in self-examination to promote early detection of breast cancer. This allows treatment of breast disease at the earliest, most curable stage.

McFarland Clinic uses the latest and most advanced technology for breast cancer screening and detection. McFarland Clinic is a designated Pink Ribbon Facility recognized for providing excellence in breast health paired with exceptional support of women.

Services

Related Specialties & Services

Locations & Hours

1215 Duff Avenue Office

1215 Duff Ave
Ames, IA 50010

515-239-4456

Location Details on 1215 Duff Avenue Office

Hours

DayTime
Monday8am-5pm
Tuesday8am-5pm
Wednesday8am-5pm
Thursday8am-5pm
Friday8am-5pm

Carroll Office

1214 S Grant Road
Carroll, IA 51401

712-792-1500

Location Details on Carroll Office

Hours

DayTime
Monday8am-5pm
Tuesday8am-5pm
Wednesday8am-5pm
Thursday8am-5pm
Friday8am-5pm

Marshalltown Office

312 East Main Street
Marshalltown, IA 50158

641-844-2215

Location Details on Marshalltown Office

Hours

DayTime
Monday8am-5pm
Tuesday8am-5pm
Wednesday8am-5pm
Thursday8am-5pm
Friday8am-5pm

Mammography and Stereotactic Biopsy

Mammography Teams

Mammography

  • 3-D Digital Mammography available in Ames, Carroll, and Marshalltown.

McFarland Clinic mammograms are read by an accredited radiologist and analyzed by computer-aided detection (CAD). CAD assists the radiologist by giving a computerized second review of your mammograms to draw attention to potential areas of concern.


Stereotactic Biopsy

  • Available in Ames.

Stereotactic breast biopsy uses mammography to help locate a breast abnormality.  A tissue sample will be removed for examination under a microscope. The biopsy is less invasive than a surgical biopsy and allows evaluation of calcifications or tiny masses that are not visible on ultrasound. You will receive a phone call from the McFarland Clinic Breast Center to schedule your appointment and go over important information regarding this procedure.

The Exam

During the biopsy, you will sit in a special chair. The technologist will position your breast similar to a mammogram. The Radiologist will use a local anesthetic to numb the biopsy area. A small incision will be made, and a vacuum-assisted needle will advance into the breast to the site of abnormality.

We will take four to six samples of the abnormality and place a tiny ceramic marker, about the size of a comma, at the site when we are finished. Pressure is held on the breast tissue to stop any bleeding that occurs, and a steri-strip will close the incision site without sutures. This procedure will take approximately one hour from the time you arrive to finish.

We ask you to minimize activities for about 24 hours after the biopsy - no heavy lifting or arm movement.

Results

Your results will be available to your provider within 48 hours. The Breast Center staff will help arrange that appointment.

Things to Know Before Your Stereotactic Biopsy

  • Have 1-2 small ice packs in your freezer prior to your biopsy.
  • Most prescribed medications can be taken the morning of the breast biopsy. You will be asked to discontinue the use of any blood thinners including aspirin and aspirin-like products (such as Bayer and Excedrin) prior to your biopsy.  
  • You will be able to drive to and from McFarland Clinic on the day of your biopsy. Family members or friends may accompany you on your visit, but they are not allowed in the biopsy room.
  • Please wear a tight-fitting bra. This will help with the compression bandage placed on your incision site and will hold in place the ice pack that we send home with you.
  • Wear comfortable, two-piece clothing. Avoid wearing light-colored clothing.
  • Eat a light breakfast/snack before the procedure.
  • If you have questions or concerns before the day of your biopsy, please call the Imaging Department at McFarland Clinic: 515-239-4436

Ultrasound

Breast Ultrasound Teams

Automated Whole Breast Ultrasound Study (AWBUS)

  • Available in Ames (1215 Duff location).

AWBUS is an additional screening tool for women with dense breast tissue that can aid in the detection of cancers when performed in addition to mammography. (It is not a replacement for mammography.) Women who have dense breast tissue and choose not to undergo a breast MRI screening can choose AWBUS.

The Exam

The exam takes 20 to 30 minutes. You will be asked to put on a special tight-fitting cami that smooths out the breast tissue and to lie on your back, slightly rolled to each side for the exam. The scanner is guided by a sonographer to make sure continuous contact is made with the skin. Cine-clip images are then sent to the radiologist to review for any abnormalities. Similar to a mammogram, if an abnormality is identified by the radiologist, a focused breast ultrasound will be scheduled and performed at a separate time to investigate any abnormalities.

Insurance

Most insurance companies will apply the costs of this imaging study to the medical/deductible portion of your insurance. You may be responsible for up to $400 for this exam. If you would like to discuss the cost with your insurance company prior to this exam, provide them with the CPT code 76641-50 for each breast and diagnosis code R92.2.


Breast Ultrasound

  • Available in Ames (1215 Duff location), Carroll, and Marshalltown.

Targeted ultrasound evaluates palpable lumps in the breast and investigates abnormalities identified on Mammogram, AWBUS, or breast MRI. Ultrasound can help determine if a lesion is benign or if it requires further evaluation with a biopsy.

The appointment may take up to 45 minutes. The images the sonographer obtains will be shown to a radiologist at the time of the exam.


Ultrasound Guided Breast Biopsy

  • Available in Ames (1215 Duff location).

The Exam

Ultrasound guided breast biopsies are an outpatient procedure performed by the radiologist. No general anesthetic is required–only local anesthetic within the breast tissue. A small incision is made into the skin, and the biopsy needle is directed to the lesion with ultrasound guidance. Biopsy samples are obtained, and a biopsy clip is placed to identify the site of biopsy. Pressure is held at the biopsy site until any bleeding is stopped. A steri strip will close the incision site without sutures. A light compression mammogram is taken to identify the clip placement for future mammogram reference. The tissue samples are evaluated by the pathologist, and a report is sent to your doctor. This procedure will take approximately one hour from the time you arrive to finish.

We ask you to minimize activities for about 24 hours after the biopsy - no heavy lifting or arm movement.

Results

Your results will be available to your provider within 48 hours.

Things to know before your Ultrasound Biopsy

Have 1-2 small ice packs in your freezer prior to your biopsy.

  • Most prescribed medications can be taken the morning of the breast biopsy. You will be asked to discontinue the use of any blood thinners including aspirin and aspirin-like products (such as Bayer and Excedrin) prior to your biopsy. 
  • You will be able to drive to and from McFarland Clinic on the day of your biopsy. Family members or friends may accompany you on your visit, but they are not allowed in the biopsy room.
  • Please wear a tight-fitting bra. This will help with the compression bandage placed on your incision site and will hold in place the ice pack that we send home with you.
  • Wear comfortable, two-piece clothing. Avoid wearing light-colored clothing.
  • Eat a light breakfast/snack before the procedure.
  • If you have questions or concerns before the day of your biopsy, please call the Ames McFarland Clinic: 515-239-4436

Breast MRI

MRI Team

Breast MRI

  • Available in Ames and Marshalltown.

Diagnostic Breast MRI uses strong magnets to create detailed images of the breast tissue. In addition to your yearly mammogram, research studies have shown that MRI is the best method for detecting breast cancer at its smallest size.

The Exam

No special preparation is necessary for a breast MRI. The exam will take 30 to 45 minutes to complete. An IV will be started before the exam. You will lie on your abdomen for the exam, and your arms can either be above your head or by your sides depending on which is more comfortable for you. Towards the end of the exam, a gadolinium-based contrast agent will be injected into the IV to assist in the identification of any abnormalities.

If you are claustrophobic, you may want to speak with your provider about a sedative prior to the test. If you take a sedative, you will be required to have a driver with you or have other travel arrangements made ahead of time.

Once the exam is complete, you will be free to leave, and the results will be sent to the ordering provider.

Insurance

Insurance companies typically only cover a diagnostic breast MRI for individuals at high risk of breast cancer (this is based on family history, genetic markers, and other risk factors for the development of breast cancer.

McFarland Clinic offers an abbreviated screening breast MRI exam at a cost of $399 for patients who desire additional screening but may not qualify for insurance coverage.


Abbreviated Breast MRI (AB-MRI)

  • Available in Ames and Marshalltown.

Unlike a diagnostic breast MRI, no referral from a provider is necessary to have an abbreviated screening breast MRI. We do ask that you list a provider to whom results should be sent.

The Exam

No special preparation is necessary for an abbreviated screening breast MRI. The exam will take 10 to 15 minutes to complete. An IV will be started before the exam. You will lie on your abdomen for the exam, and your arms can either be above your head or by your sides depending on which is more comfortable for you. Towards the end of the exam, a gadolinium-based contrast agent will be injected into the IV to assist identification of any abnormalities.

If you are claustrophobic, you may want to speak with your provider about a sedative prior to the test. If you take a sedative, you will be required to have a driver with you or have other travel arrangements made ahead of time. Once the exam is complete, you will be free to leave, and the results will be sent to the provider you identified.

Cost

McFarland Clinic offers a screening breast MRI exam at a cost of $399 for patients who desire additional screening and do not qualify for insurance coverage.

Breast Density

What is Breast Density?

Breasts are made up of a mixture of fibrous, glandular, and fatty tissue. Your breasts are considered dense if you have more fibrous or glandular tissue and less fat. Having dense breast tissue increases your risk of developing breast cancer.

How Do I Know if I Have Dense Breast Tissue?

Automatic software analyzes mammogram images objectively and consistently, providing the radiologist with breast composition information including breast density assessment.

A breast density score will be included in the patient letter following the mammogram screening. The score will range from A (fatty) to D (extremely dense).

Women with dense breasts (category C or D), should consider additional breast exam options in addition to a yearly mammogram. Additional screening options include Breast MRI and Automated Whole Breast Ultrasound Study (AWBUS).

  • 40 percent of all women have dense breast tissue
  • Mammography may miss cancers in women with dense breast tissue
  • Finding cancers earlier can improve survival

Video Resources

Demystifying Breast Cancer

What's the difference between a mammogram, an ultrasound, and an MRI screening. McFarland Clinic Radiologist Douglas Lake, MD has the answers.

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