Buddy Check 3

Buddy Check 3

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Buddy Check 3 November

Updated: Tuesday, March 19 2013, 11:01 AM CDT
Last month during our Buddy Check Three segment, we profiled reporter Kathryn Daniel's mammogram and ultrasound.

Kathryn found a lump in her breast, which a nurse and doctor confirmed.

The lump did not show up on her mammogram or the ultrasound exams, so we thought she was out of the woods.

But a radiologist told us there are certain kinds of breast tumors called "occult breast cancers" that only appear during an MRI exam.

So Kathryn made an appointment and invited us along.

Catherine Goddette runs the Breast MRI department at Sacred Heart Hospital. She's been in the breast health business for more than 20 years.

Catherine Goddette/Sacred Heart Hospital; "The whole awareness, the Breast Cancer awareness has just exploded in the last decade, where it needs to be cause one in eight of us get Breast Cancer so we need to up the technology and I think that is happening."

Breast MRI is the very latest tool in detecting breast cancer. It uses contrast dye to show any problem areas. Not all MRI's require contrast.

Catherine Goddette; "A Breast MR does because the computer is gonna monitor how quickly the breast tissue takes us the Galadium and how quickly it washes it."

The contrast is injected during the MRI via an IV.

Catherine Goddette; "So we're going to start an IV in Kathryn, a small needle, small needle Kathryn."

Part of the advanced technology of the breast MRI is the custom sentinel table. The patient lies face down and special compartments enclose the chest.

Catherine Goddette; "Face down, I like to tell my patients it's kinda like a massage without the massage."

The table is comfortable and I appreciate the earplugs and earphones, but as I am slid into the MRI machine, I remember that I am mildly claustrophobic and begin to panic.

Catherine gave me a ball to squeeze in case I completely cannot stand it, but the thought of having to get another IV and start all over again on a different day keeps me from stopping the exam.

The clanging is really loud, but soon they play classical music and it does help. After 20 minutes, the exam is over. Catherine says a radiologist will read the report this afternoon and then compare it to my mammogram and ultrasound films.

She says I should get the results from my doctor within 48 hours.

I know I am really lucky breast MRI is available. Just a couple of years ago, I would have had to gone straight to surgery for a biopsy.

Catherine Goddette; "It is new technology. It's definitely a big step in the fight against Breast Cancer and we're all about making Breast Cancer not a major leading cause of death in women this is part of that."

Kathryn got her results last week; her MRI exam did not show any tumors. If the lump is still palpable in six months, she'll have a follow up exam or perhaps a breast biopsy at that point.

Her doctor will decide and we'll keep you posted.Buddy Check 3 November

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