Can a 3D mammogram show cancer

Mammography & Tomosynthesis

In a mammography, a high-resolution X-ray image is taken in two planes (2D) of each breast. Using a mammography, we can show benign nodular changes such as cysts or malignant nodules. An early sign of malignant changes is the so-called micro-calc. This can also be represented by mammography.

In the case of a 2D image, however, the tissue structures can overlap in the view, as a result of which

  • Malicious changes in deep-lying areas remain invisible and thus undetected and
  • incorrectly suspicious structures are mapped.
    Due to the potential cancer diagnosis, these false-positive results represent a strong emotional burden for the patient and lead to further examinations such as another mammography, tissue removal, etc.


We have had the only one since 2018 digital mammography device in the Rhein-Kreis Neuss, with which 3D images of the breast can be generated. This tomosynthesis device combines the conventional method of mammography with a rotating X-ray source, the images of which are digitally converted into a 3D model and thus enable insights into areas of the breast that were previously hidden in 2D mammography.


Tomosynthesis is a form of mammography and that is currently state-of-the-art procedures for breast cancer diagnostics. The very precise and detailed 3D view makes it an important tool for Early detection of breast cancer. Tomosynthesis is also called 3D mammography designated.

We carry out tomosynthesis on an inpatient and outpatient basis. Simply make an appointment and bring your transfer with you.

  • What are the advantages of tomosynthesis?

    • 65% more invasive breast cancers are detected
    • 40% fewer false-positive results and second examinations
    • 30% more malicious changes are detected


    Due to the high spatial resolution, tomosynthesis delivers significantly sharper images than conventional mammography methods. Especially at Microcalcifications a clearer diagnosis can be made. Grouped microcalcifications indicate breast cancer - but these can only be distinguished from benign calcifications through detailed image data.

    Women with dense mammary gland tissue have an increased risk of cancer. At the same time, the radiopaque or uneven tissue makes diagnosis difficult with conventional mammography. This type of tissue is found in 10 to 20 percent of all women. Tomosynthesis allows the breast to be fully examined even in difficult conditions.

    In contrast to a mammography in screening - in which the findings can only be discussed after the documents have been sent by post and an appointment with the specialist has been made again - the discussion at the tomosynthesis takes place directly after the examination. If there are any abnormalities, the patient can present herself to our breast center directly on site and without delay.

  • How does an examination with tomosynthesis work?

    The procedure of a tomosynthesis and a conventional mammography are quite similar. Our patients are looked after by an X-ray assistant in a special room. Two pictures are taken of each breast from different directions. To do this, the breast is pressed as flat as possible between two plates. The flatter the breast, the fewer X-rays are required to penetrate the tissue and the more informative the examination is. This can be uncomfortable, but it does not harm the female breast.

    The only difference between mammography and tomosynthesis: with tomosynthesis, the device moves slightly in order to obtain the three-dimensional data.

    Both breasts are always examined, as there are great individual variations in the tissue structure of the breasts.

  • Are there additional costs for a tomosynthesis?

    No. We do not incur any additional costs for examinations using the tomosynthesis method.

  • What do I have to consider as a patient?

    On the day of the mammography, you should refrain from using creams or lotions and deodorants. As part of the mammography, an additional palpation examination of the breast is usually carried out by the examining doctor as well as a discussion of the findings. In the event of certain findings, our specialists can arrange further examinations such as an ultrasound examination or magnetic resonance imaging of the breast for a precise diagnosis.