Breast Imaging

The Vanderbilt Breast Center was established in 1991 to provide convenient and efficient diagnosis and treatment for a growing patient population. In response to continued growth and increased complexity of breast health management, the Breast Center moved to an expanded and renovated space in the Medical Center’s new One Hundred Oaks complex in 2009. A multidisciplinary group of physicians and advanced practice nurses work together so that patients receive the highest level of care from providers specializing in breast health. Seven of our 11 breast imaging radiologists have completed fellowship training in breast imaging and all have extensive experience in diagnostic breast imaging. In addition to our radiologists, this multidisciplinary team is made up of the following medical specialties: Surgical Oncology, Plastic Surgery, Medical Oncology, Radiation Oncology and Pathology. There are also support services from a variety of other areas including the Hereditary Cancer Program, Psychiatry, Social Work, and Nutrition.

Approximately 35,000 screening and diagnostic mammograms are performed annually utilizing state-of-the-art technology, including computer-aided detection. In 2014, Digital Breast Tomosynthesis was added to the Breast Center’s screening and diagnostic services. In addition to mammography, more than 5,000 breast ultrasound evaluations are performed annually, as well as more than 800 breast magnetic resonance imaging studies generated by a dedicated magnet located within the Breast Center. Other imaging modalities, including computed tomography, positron emission tomography and nuclear medicine, are easily accessible in the Department of Radiology and Radiological Sciences. The Breast Imaging Section also interprets over 700 imaging studies from outlying facilities each year to accommodate the many patients referred to the National Cancer Institute and National Comprehensive Cancer Network affiliated Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center. The imaging section of the Vanderbilt Breast Center has earned the American College of Radiology’s highest level of accreditation, Breast Imaging Center of Excellence. The Breast Center is also accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers and in 2014 was recognized as one of the top 125 Breast Centers in the country through its receipt of the prestigious Women’s Choice Award.

As a comprehensive breast center, a full range of interventional breast services are also provided, with more than 2,000 interventional procedures performed annually. Cyst aspirations and fine-needle aspiration biopsies are performed under US or clinical guidance. Imaging directed 14 gauge core needle biopsies are performed along with 7 to 14 gauge vacuum assisted core needle biopsies under sonographic, stereotactic or MRI guidance. Preoperative image guided needle/wire localizations are routinely performed for accurate excision of non-palpable imaging abnormalities.

The Breast Imaging Section offers numerous research endeavors and educational opportunities in conjunction with the Vanderbilt Institute of Imaging Science. Radiology residents and breast imaging fellows are scheduled daily at the Breast Center and medical students are frequently present in conjunction with their rotations through the represented clinical specialties.

For information about our breast imaging fellowship, click here.

For more information about the Vanderbilt Breast Center, click here.


Section Chief and Members