Whole Breast Ultrasound (WBUS)
Whole Breast Ultrasound (WBUS) is an ultrasound examination of the breast that can find small cancers that standard mammography does not see. It is not a replacement for annual mammogram screenings. Studies show that a Whole Breast Ultrasound examination in conjunction with a mammogram can find more cancers in women with dense breast than mammography alone. Mammography is 95+% sensitive in finding cancers in patients with fatty breasts and only 60% sensitive in patients with dense breasts.
*If your mammogram shows you have dense breasts, you may want to consider Whole Breast Ultrasound in addition to your mammogram.
- Whole Breast Ultrasound may find an additional 7-10 cancers per 1,000 women with dense breasts that were not detected by standard mammography alone
- Early detection can increase breast cancer survival.
- More than 40% of all women have dense breast tissue.
What to expect at your Whole Breast Ultrasound exam:
- No radiation or compression
- Exam time is 20-30 minutes
What is Whole Breast Ultrasound?
Whole Breast Ultrasound (WBUS) is a screening ultrasound of both breasts. This examination, when used in conjunction with traditional or 3D mammography, can detect more cancers in women with dense breast tissue. This is a painless examination that takes less than 30 minutes to complete and has no radiation or compression.
Whole Breast Ultrasound may not be covered by your insurance plan. As benefits vary across insurance carriers and plans, the amount you would be responsible for is $125.00.
Whole Breast Ultrasound Frequently Asked Questions:
- What is WBUS and who is recommended to get it?
- Whole Breast Ultrasound (WBUS) is a screening ultrasound exam that is painless and has no radiation exposure. Women with extreme and heterogeneous dense breast tissue benefit most from WBUS.
- If I get a 3D mammogram, do I need a WBUS?
- A WBUS is meant to complement A WBUS should not be used to replace your annual screening mammogram.
- Does WBUS see different information than 3D mammography?
- Yes, WBUS and mammography are complementary and use different technologies to detect breast cancer. For example, calcifications (potential early stage of breast cancer) can only be seen on your mammogram, while it is easier to spot masses in women with extremely dense breast tissue using WBUS.
- Studies show WBUS detects 3-5 cancers per 1,000 women screened not seen on mammography.
- Can I alternate WBUS and 2D/3D mammograms?
- RDC recommends annual mammography. There are no national guidelines for WBUS at this time. RDC recommends discussing your personal situation and risk factors with your doctor to decide how to best use WBUS for your breast cancer screening.