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Positron Emission Mammography (PEM)

Community Healthcare System offers the area’s only advanced Positron Emission Mammography (PEM), which can show the location as well as the metabolic phase of a breast mass or growth. This technology is available at the Community Diagnostic Center in Munster.

A high-resolution Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scanner is used to perform PEM. The metabolic view allows the physician to make the optimal cancer care decision, for abnormalities as small at 1.6 mm, the size of a grain of rice, by providing an unprecedented ability to distinguish between benign (non-cancerous) and malignant (cancerous) masses.

This advanced technology has three primary benefits for patients diagnosed with breast cancer. First, with the PEM scanner, physicians can better determine if a patient is a candidate for breast-conserving surgery such as lumpectomy. Second, knowing the exact location and extent of the cancer guides physicians during surgery and to help assure they remove all suspicious tissue. Third, the physician is also able to use PEM to monitor cancer treatment regimens or check for a recurrence of the disease.