Contrast Enhanced Mammography

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Frequently Asked Questions:

What is Contrast Enhanced Mammography?

Contrast Enhanced Spectral Mammography (CESM) is a special type of mammogram that is performed after an IV injection of X-ray contrast (iodine). CESM shows all of the information of a regular mammogram but also shows areas of increased blood supply. Breast cancer typically has a greater blood supply than normal tissue so it is highlighted on the images. CBIS uses the GE Healthcare CESM system known as SenoBright.

This procedure, performed by our experienced staff, has been a useful tool for patients in need of imaging in addition to standard mammography and ultrasound.  For example, if a biopsy shows cancer, it is often helpful to get further imaging to make sure the size and extent of the tumor are known to the surgeon before surgery.  This has been typically done with MRI but if MRI is not possible or not desired then CESM may be a good choice.  CESM has also been helpful if mammogram/ultrasound are inconclusive and may have a role in women after lumpectomy or those with dense breast tissue, which limits cancer detection.

Why Choose CBIS for my CESM?

In addition to having the most experience in this tool, in 2018 CESM became the first in the US to use the latest generation system called “HD SenoBright”.  Compared with the first generation of SenoBright, the new HD version produces clear image quality and reduces acquisition time by 40% in women with large breasts.

How Should I Prepare for My Exam?

Since CESM uses an injection of iodine (just like a CT scan or angiogram), we will check to make sure you are not allergic to iodine and may need you to have a blood test to check your kidney function.  Just as with all mammogram exams, it is most comfortable for you to wear a two-piece outfit that you can easily remove your top. Please do not apply deodorant on the day of the exam.