The Invenia Automated Breast Ultrasound System (ABUS) from GE Healthcare offers a non-ionizing alternative to other supplemental screening options for women with dense breast tissue, according to GE. FDA-approved for diagnostic use as an adjunct to mammography, the ABUS was recently installed at multiple locations in central Virginia, including Henrico Doctors’ Hospital in Henrico County and Johnston-Willis Hospital in Chesterfield County.

“The expanded indication is to increase breast cancer detection rate in asymptomatic women with dense breast parenchyma [tissue], following a negative screening mammogram,” according to the FDA. When used in addition to mammography, Invenia ABUS can improve breast cancer detection by 35.7% over mammography alone, GE reports.

“[Breast density] masks the cancers from us because the masses look just like dense breast tissue,” said Melanie Dehart, MD, of Radiology Associates of Richmond. “[ABUS is] an extremely useful tool for patients with dense breast tissue. I far prefer it to my hand-held two-dimensional ultrasounds. I think it’s going to be a much more reliable screening ultrasound than the handheld. It’s going to be a very powerful tool for us to find tumors earlier.”

The Invenia ABUS acquisition process uses 3D ultrasound technology to quickly image women with dense breast tissue, with each exam taking approximately 15 minutes. Advanced algorithms automate the imaging process to help provide good image quality and reproducibility from user to user, including tissue equalization, nipple shadow compensation, breast border detection, and chest wall detection.

Invenia ABUS’s imaging architecture shifts traditional ultrasound from hardware- to software-based processing, according to the company’s website. The system uses massive parallel processing power and beam-forming technology to create focus at every pixel, delivering an image that is said to have high uniformity and resolution. The system’s Reverse Curve transducer was also designed to conform to a woman’s anatomy. For more information about the Invenia Automated Breast Ultrasound System (ABUS), visit the GE Healthcare website.