You are here

Breast cancer awareness: Why breast density matters

woman holding pink ribbon

Regular mammograms are the best way to find breast cancer early. But, if your mammogram report says you have dense breast tissue – you may wonder what this means.

According the American College of Radiology, dense breast tissue is found in almost 40 percent of women and is a completely normal finding. Breasts are made up of a mixture of fibrous and glandular tissue and fatty tissue. Breasts are considered dense if there is a lot of fibrous or glandular tissue but not much fat.

“Dense breast tissue makes it harder for radiologists to detect cancer,” said Dr. Vanessa Cook at Via Christi’s Primary Care Clinic. “On mammograms, dense breast tissue looks white, and potentially cancerous masses also look white – so the density can hide the tumors, making it more challenging to find cancer cells.”

If your mammogram shows that you have dense breast tissue, talk to your provider to determine the best screening options for you based on your family history and other risk factors. Additional screening options may include:

  • Whole-breast ultrasound
  • Abbreviated Breast MRI (AB-MRI)
  • 3D Mammograms

To schedule a mammogram, call:

  • Manhattan - 785-565-4707
  • Pittsburg - 620-232-0447
  • Wichita - 316-613-4707
About Michelle Kennedy

Michelle Kennedy is the Senior Marketing Specialist for Via Christi Hospital in Manhattan, Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg and Wamego Health Center. She is a proud wife and mom and loves cooking, camping and spending time outdoors, her dogs and reading.