3-D mammography

A 3-D mammogram saved her life.
Now, she can keep saving others.

Thanks to 3-D mammography, breast cancer surgeon Nathalie Johnson is also a breast cancer survivor. Her 3-D mammogram found the cancer her 2-D mammogram missed. She shares her own story in this video.

Now with reduced radiation: Get more cancer-finding power, without more radiation. In Portland, South Metro, Gresham and Vancouver - only at Legacy.

Appointments: Oregon - 503-413-7800; Washington - 360-487-1800.

Five locations: Find one near you


3-D mammography: Dr. Nathalie Johnson shares her own story

Why Legacy offers 3-D mammography to all patients

3-D mammography reveals more, so more cancers are found. Also, more cancers are found earlier when treatment is most successful. Most women survive breast cancer when it is found in its earliest stage. Legacy's 3-D technology finds more, without more radiation.

The largest study on 3-D mammography, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), found that 3-D:

  • Finds 41% more invasive breast cancers
  • Finds 29% more breast cancers of all types
  • Results in 15% fewer false alarms

View a short video about the JAMA study.

Read an article about the latest 3-D mammography study from the University of Washington

Who should choose a 3-D mammogram?

While all women can benefit from a 3-D exam, it is particularly beneficial if you have dense breast tissue or a family history of breast cancer. Because it's hard to know who will benefit from 3-D, Legacy offers all women a 3-D mammogram.

What is the difference between traditional 2-D and the new 3-D mammograms?

2-D mammography provides two flat images of the breast—one from the top of the breast and one from the side. 3-D imaging (tomosynthesis) provides images of the breast in many "slices", which allows radiologists to examine the breast tissue layer by layer. This makes it possible for doctors to see things that were hidden by overlapping tissue on 2-D mammograms. 3-D mammograms also reduce the chances of getting called back for more tests.

Is there more radiation in a 3-D versus 2-D exam?

Not at Legacy. We've upgraded our technology, so you get the cancer-finding power of 3-D, without more radiation. At Legacy, the radiation dose is the same as that of a standard 2-D mammogram. (We offer 3-D at five locations. Find one here.) Wonder how much radiation is in a mammogram? Watch the video or download the infographic

About the older technology: Adding 3-D to a traditional 2-D exam increases the radiation dose somewhat, but the combination is still well below federal limits on radiation exposure. (With a 3-D mammogram, you actually get both 2-D and 3-D views.) In fact, the combination emits less radiation than the amount an average person gets from the environment each year.

Is the actual exam for a 3-D mammogram any different than that of a 2-D?

You will notice no difference in a 3-D mammogram versus 2-D mammogram. Compression is the same in each exam and it takes about the same time.

Our locations

All four Legacy Breast Health Centers plus Legacy Emanuel Medical Center offer 3-D mammography to all patients. For an appointment call:

  • In Oregon: 503-413-7800
  • In Washington: 360-487-1800