I am originally from a small rural community in Northern Oklahoma, so I know what it means to have a good doctor, and what it means to need one. When I finished my medical training (four years of medical school, a year of primary care training, and four more years of general radiology training), I did an additional year (a fellowship) dedicated entirely to the interpretation of mammograms and the management of breast disease. During my fellowship year at the university, I worked with a team of experienced breast radiologists who not only gave me the training and expertise I needed to confidently identify breast cancer, but who also form a network of colleagues and professors with whom to consult on challenging cases.
It was also during my fellowship that I learned that the most effective breast radiologists are not only appropriately trained, but are keenly aware of, and responsive to, the unique needs of patients facing the possible diagnosis of breast cancer. This means taking a little extra time to listen to a patient's full history, explain the radiographic finding to the patient, and make sure her questions are answered before she leaves the office. Although some radiologists refer to this as "coddling" or "hand-holding," good communication between doctor and patient is simply good medicine. I would want my breast radiologist to see me as a human being and not just a disembodied image on a computer screen, and good doctors know that what we want for ourselves, we must give to our patients.
Technology continues to grow at warp speed. In the last few years, previously impenetrable barriers have been shattered in the world of mammography. A new kind of mammogram is consistently finding breast cancers of smaller sizes and at earlier stages than traditional mammograms. Once I researched the medical literature and reviewed case studies, I knew I wanted this technology for myself, my loved ones, and my patients. Because of tomography's ability to find breast cancers we cannot otherwise see, it will very likely become the new standard in mammography, and Kentucky Breast Care is one of only a few breast centers offering tomography in all of Kentucky.
When I began working in the Cumberland area and logging each new diagnosis of breast cancer, I was struck not only by the sheer number of breast cancer diagnoses in our community, but by the young age of many of my patients. As a result, I felt an urgent need to make this revolutionary technology available sooner rather than later, and began the groundwork necessary to bring tomography to our region.
As a scientist, I fully appreciate the life-changing potential of this technology. As a doctor, I am ecstatic about the positive impact 3D tomography will have on the outcomes of my patients. As the founder of Kentucky Breast Care, I am honored to bring this state of the art facility to the people of my community.