search

Take care of your health

Schedule your mammogram

If you have dense breast tissue, schedule a 3D mammogram. Schedule online or call 913-588-1227.

Dense Breast Tissue

What you can do about it

Some confusing messages appear in the media about women with dense breast tissue and their likelihood of developing breast cancer. Reliable answers to common questions on the issue should clear confusion and motivate action.

What are dense breasts?

Breast tissue is composed of glandular and connective tissue, or a combination of milk ducts and supporting tissue, and fat. When the breasts have more glandular and connective tissue than fat, they are termed dense.

What is the relationship of dense breasts to breast cancer?

Patients with dense breasts have a higher risk of developing breast cancer. The denser the breasts are, the higher the risk. In very dense breasts, the risk can be four to six times that of fatty breasts.

How do I know if I have dense breasts?

Breast density is determined on the mammogram and can usually be found in the radiologist's interpretation of the mammogram. Your primary care physician, who gets this report, should have this information. If not, it can be obtained from the facility that performed your mammogram.

If I have dense breasts, what should I do?

Be informed. In addition to an increased risk of breast cancer, your mammogram is more likely to be less accurate in detecting cancer. You may want to consider another screening exam in addition to mammography, such as an ultrasound. We have seen an increased breast cancer detection rate by combining breast ultrasound with mammography in screening patients for cancer with dense breasts. The University of Kansas Health System is one of the only healthcare facilities in the region that offers dense breast screening.

If you think you have dense breast tissue and may benefit from a supplemental ultrasound screening, talk with your doctor. Ask if your mammogram indicated you have dense tissue. Your provider can fax an order to 913-588-7872 and call us at 913-588-6804 to schedule an appointment.