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Southport hospital going digital

READ MORE: Southport hospital going digital
Television stations aren't the only ones switching from analog to digital. Some hospitals are as well. The Dosher Memorial Hospital in Southport replaced its old analog mammography units with new state of the art digital machines. At the age of 52 Sarah Whitmer discovered she had breast cancer. With no family history or a sign of a lump, the diagnosis came as a shock. "One day it's a normal mammogram, the next it's breast cancer," said Whitmer. Almost three years ago, the doctors found signs of cancer in her breast. Whitmer said, "Yes I had cancer. It was a small tumor and I had cancer cells." She had to have her breast removed. The surgery was a success. "Two and a half years later I'm cancer free. It's awesome," said Whitmer. Doctors used an analog mammogram unit for her breast cancer screening. Five months ago, the hospital upgraded and began using new digital mammogram machines. Director of diagnostic imagining Marci Paulk said with the old analog machines, a person has to print film, and deliver it to radiology. There is a clear advantage to having digital images. "Now with the digital, or electronic image, when they take that picture it's instantaneous where the radiologist can look at those pictures," said Paulk. While a quicker turnaround time is nice, the real benefit is the higher quality resolution can better detect potential problems. But, Paulk said the new technology doesn't help if you don't get screened. "To prevent breast cancer, come in and get your mammogram whether your male or female to stay healthy you should come in at 35 or 40 for a base line meaning you come in for a screening," said Paulk. The new digital mammogram units were paid for with funds raised by the hospital's volunteers. The volunteers do this because they want the hospital to have the newest equipment, but not be forced to cut back on other needed medical expenses.

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Breast screening

A friend has found a breast lump and she doesn't have insurance. What should she do?