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June 2, 1995     Cape Gazette
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June 2, 1995

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CAPE GAZE'ITE; Friday/June 2 -Jun:e8, 1995 -33 " I Cancer Watch Breast cancer center opens in Georgetown quality point of view," Smoot said, "it's an unacceptably long delay. No woman should have to go through that. "We don't think it should be more than two to three days." Now, with stereotactic needle biopsies, results are not only available within two days, they are also more accurate. "Our accuracy, and our ability to con- fLrm our accuracy, is within mil- limeters," said Smoot. How does the breast center do it? The stereotactic breast biopsy system combines a precision imaging system with computer- ized calculations to precisely determine which tissue areas must be removed for the pathology test- ing. Physicians compress the breast, pinpointing locations by using the technology of the stereo- tactic system. Then, using a spe- cial gun, "we take a core of breast tissue with each pass of the nee- dle," Smoot said. "The patient feels and hears a little bit of a snap. But it's pain- less. It's done under a small, local anesthetic under the skin. This is where medicine and surgery are going these days." Procedures are less invasive, he said, and there's a decrease in convalescence time. Additionally, he said, the stereotactic procedure is an advantage because by not leaving large areas of scar tissue, there is less interference in future imaging procedures. Other advantages include less danger from anesthe- sia complications and far less time away from work. The Mid-Dehnarva Breast Cen- ter is a joint venture between Nan- ticoke and Milford Memorial Hospitals, said Smoot. However, he said, "it is open to people who aren't necessarily partners" because the center's goal is to pro- By Kerry Kester Sussex County women no longer need to face the trauma of invasive surgery and extended emotional turmoil when their mammograms indicate unusual masses. Instead, they can enter the world of cutting edge technol- ogy at the Mid-Delmarva Breast Center in Georgetown. There, they can have a nearly painless biopsy and results of the cancer test within 72 hours. 'rhis is a breakthrough in the treatment of breast disease," said Roy Smoot, a surgeon with Nanti- coke Surgical Associates, who was instrumental in developing the center. What is most impor- tant at the center, Smoot said, is the stereotactic needle biopsy technology. "What we've come to realize as an increasing number of women have mammographies, is that probably three to five percent result in biopsy," Smoot said. Statistically, 15 percent of the women have cancer, with 85 per- cent of biopsy cases being benign. As a result, he said, the biopsy procedure ultimately proves unnecessary for a high percentage of the women who have them. Physicians performing tradi- tional biopsies, he said, usually make a two to three inch incision in the breast. Then, he said, in order to definitely assure the tis- sue from the questionable mass contains the sample area, at least a two inch area of tissue is removed. Women are left with a scar, and then they begin a long wait to learn if they have breast cancer. Often, Smoot said, the time from when a woman learns of an irregularity revealed in a mammo- gram to the time when she learns whether she has cancer, can take up to six or eight weeks. "From a Rehoboth Beach Pharmacy 107 Rehoboth Avenue 302-227-8592j vide care access to everyone. The physicians who developed the center chose Georgetown because it is centrally located in the county. "So what we hope to do is break the mold of the old thought process and have every- thing for everyone, We won't have the duplication of services," Smoot said. Instead, as a "shared resource", he said, healthcare costs can be reduced. "As far as I know, it's the first successful collaborative effort between hospitals," Smoot said. Presently the center is staffed with a technologist, a certified mam- mographer, and three surgeons certified to use the stereotactic system. Mid-Dehnarva Breast Center is at 505A Market Street in George- town. It is open fi'om 8a.m. until 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Appointments are required. For more information, call 856-9860. Kerry Kuter photo Physicians from a joint venture between Nantieoke and Milford Memorial hospitals combined their expertise and vision to develop the Mid.Atlantic Breast Center in George- town. The center, whieh opened on April 12, specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of breast disease. Shown in front of the machine are from (I. to r.) Doctors Roy Smoot of Nanti- coke Surgical Auoeiates; Casey Graybeal of Graybeal and Crabb; Fred Toy and Steve Carey, both of Nanticoke Surgical Associates. Enjoy a priceless retirement lifestyle at an affordable price. At our Eastern Shore community a price- less lifestyle is well within reach. 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