November 4, 2019

Device at Rockledge Regional provides 3D breast scans with superior patient comfort

New technology includes attachment that performs biopsies on seated patients

Rockledge, Florida (October 30, 2019) – Rockledge Regional Medical Center is offering patients the next generation of mammogram technology: an intricate, 3D scan that examines tissue like individual pages in a book.

The GeniusTM 3D MammographyTM machine is a sophisticated tomography device that has the enhanced ability to detect potential areas of concern earlier and with more precision than ever before. The device has been in use at Rockledge Regional Medical Center since August.

“This new technology is similar to a CAT scan, as it allows the radiologist to examine the  image of the breast tissue layer by layer,” said Michelle Hackett, lead mammographer at Rockledge Regional Medical Center, a member of the Steward Health Care family. Hackett has worked at the hospital for 28 years and is exceptionally skilled and experienced, having performed mammograms for 22 of those years.

“The new 3D scan reveals fine details that the older scans can overlook,” she said. In addition to zeroing in more effectively on abnormalities, the device also reduces false positives that would ordinarily require the patient to return for a second mammogram. For example, sometimes breast tissue gets compressed unevenly during the 2D procedures and falsely resembles an abnormality. That means unnecessary call-backs and anxiety.

“This helps reduce those callbacks,” Hackett said. “Before, when something appeared abnormal, patients would have to come back in. With the tomo [tomography], we can tell right away if things look normal or if they need a biopsy. The image is crystal clear and infinitely better than the older technology.”

The new device scans in only four seconds. “It also really provides enhanced detail and safety for women who have dense tissue, fibrocystic breasts that are hard to penetrate with the 2D machine,” Hackett said.

The machine features two innovations that help make it the premier and only mammography device of its kind in Brevard County: the SmartCurveTM breast stabilization system and the Affirm® Upright Biopsy Guidance System. The SmartCurve, which holds the breast in place for the scan, has a curved paddle designed to provide more comfort to the patient than the flat plates. The Affirm system is an attachment that performs biopsies while the patient is seated rather than lying face-down on a table – also enhancing comfort.

“Something as simple as the more-comfortable paddle has the potential to save lives,” Hackett said. That’s because some women worry about the discomfort of a mammogram and avoid coming in to get checked.

The ability to perform biopsies on seated patients is an advantage for women with mobility issues, such as back problems. “Some women are not able to lie on their stomachs for an extended period of time,” said Hackett, adding that Rockledge Regional is the first in the county to offer this upright-biopsy technology.

“We’re hoping the women who have been avoiding mammograms will now come in due to the significant improvement in patient comfort with this state of the art technology,” she said.


Michelle Hackett is available for print and on camera media interviews to further discuss this topic. To schedule, please contact Cathy Pague in Rockledge Regional public relations department at 321-255-8085.

About Steward Health Care – Rockledge & Melbourne

The Mission of Rockledge Regional Medical Center and Melbourne Regional Medical Center is to provide the highest quality health care with compassion and respect. Both hospitals are full acute care hospitals and includes a network of affiliates providing rehab services, wound care, laboratory services and assisted living. For more information on Rockledge Regional Medical Center or Melbourne Regional Medical Center, visit: and

About Steward Health Care

Steward Health Care is the nation’s largest private, for profit physician led health care network in the United States. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, Steward operates 36 hospitals in the United States and the country of Malta that regularly receive top awards for quality and safety. The company employs approximately 40,000 health care professionals. The Steward network includes multiple urgent care centers and skilled nursing facilities, substantial behavioral health services, over 7,900 beds under management, and approximately 2.2 million full risk covered lives through the company's managed care and health insurance services. The total number of paneled lives within Steward's integrated care network is projected to reach three million in 2018.

The Steward Health Care Network includes five thousand physicians across 800 communities who help to provide more than 12 million patient encounters per year. Steward Medical Group, the company's employed physician group, provides more than six million patient encounters per year. The Steward Hospital Group operates hospitals in Malta and nine states across the U.S., including Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Utah.

Media Contact: Cathy Pague, Marketing Manager, Steward Health Care
P: (321) 255-8067, E-mail: [email protected]