Jean McLaughlin Women's Center Unveils New 3D Mammogram Machine


Women should have annual mammograms beginning at age 40

The Jean McLaughlin Women’s Center at Palomar Medical Center Poway will cut the ribbon on Monday, October 1 on two new 3D breast imaging machines and one new breast biopsy machine that the site’s director says will significantly improve women’s health.
One in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime making early detection critical; Palomar Health’s 3D breast imaging machines can detect cancers sooner than traditional 2D machines. The latest guideline applies to women at average risk for breast cancer. Among other recommendations, it says all women should begin having yearly mammograms by age 45, and can change to having mammograms every other year beginning at age 55. Women should have the choice to start screening with yearly mammograms as early as age 40 if they want to.
The new 3D breast imaging machines have several advantages over the older 2D machines including sharper images that detect 20%-65% more invasive breast cancers, reduced patient callbacks because of inconclusive images and a more ergonomic design for patient comfort. The biopsy machine uses automation to reduce discomfort and improve efficiency, accuracy, and patient comfort.
Together, the three machines represent a $1.1 million investment made by Palomar Health and the Palomar Health Foundation to improve women’s health in North San Diego County. One of the machine’s donors is the widowed spouse of Lori (last name omitted to protect confidentiality) whose cancer went undetected until it was terminal despite having annual mammograms.
“It is my hope that making better tools available, like the 3D Mammography machine, will help others be successful in their fight against cancer,” said Lori’s husband, James, who believes the 3D machine may have saved Lori’s life.
The Jean McLaughlin Women’s Center offers personalized service through a nurse navigator, 98% patient satisfaction (as reported by Press Ganey), and the American College of Radiology’s designation as a Breast Center of Excellence.
About Palomar Health
Palomar Health is the most comprehensive health care delivery system in northern San Diego County and the first California member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network. It is the largest public healthcare district by area in the state, with more than 500,000 residents, and is governed by a publicly-elected board of directors. Palomar Health has several facilities serving North County, including hospitals in Escondido and Poway, expresscare health clinics in Escondido and San Elijo Hills, and a skilled nursing facility in Poway. The health system provides medical services in virtually all fields of medicine, including primary care, cardiovascular care, emergency services, trauma, cancer, orthopedics, women’s health, rehabilitation, robotic surgery and bariatric surgery. For more information about Palomar Health, please visit


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