Breast cancer is far too common.

“One in eight women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime and 75 perecent occurs in women with no family history”, says Gary Levine, M.D., medical director, MemorialCare Breast Centers. “However, if detected early breast cancer is also very curable.”

Screening mammography remains the only screening technology proven to improve breast cancer survival. For optimal benefit, most women should begin regular screening mammograms at age 40. Women with a family history of breast cancer may require an earlier start to screening and should speak with their physician.

“Not all breast screenings are equal,” says Dr. Levine, one of eight specially trained breast radiologists working at the MemorialCare Breast Centers. “The accuracy of a mammogram is based on a combination of the quality of the images and the experience and skill of the radiologist interpreting the study.”

“At MemorialCare, we are the first in California to be installing IntelligentView 3-D mammography, a new, more advanced 3-D mammography system which is the new standard for mammographic quality,” says Dr. Levine.

Surprisingly few mammograms in the U.S. (less than 30 percent) are read by a sub-specialized, dedicated breast radiologist who focuses only on mammography and breast care. Studies have shown that these sub-specialized breast radiologists detect more cancers, more early-stage-cancers and have lower screening recall rates than general radiologists. All mammograms done at any of the Memorial Breast Centers are read by sub-specialized, fully dedicated breast radiologists. “This focus and experience simply results in a higher quality, more accurate mammogram,” points out Dr. Levine.

MemorialCare Breast Centers are based at hospitals and outpatient centers in Long Beach, Fountain Valley, Laguna Hills, Irvine and San Clemente offer a multi-disciplinary team of breast care experts working together in order to ensure optimal care for our patients. All newly diagnosed cases are reviewed within a weekly pre-treatment conference where the entire team of breast care experts including radiologists, surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, plastic surgeons, genetics counselors and patient navigators discuss and come to a consensus on care.

Dr. Levine is a pioneer in breast tumor cryoablation, a technique that freezes and destroys tumors in the breast, an alternative to surgery. “It is generally used to treat benign breast tumors, but more recently we are using it to treat small invasive breast cancers as well,” says Dr. Levine.

At MemorialCare, our goal is to provide high quality and convenient breast health care. We deliver a screening experience that’s focused on accurate and expeditious results, and with Centers located near you that feel more like a stop at the spa than a hospital visit.