Diagnostic Centre in Greece: “Planmed Clarity™ 3D combines superior diagnostic accuracy and ultimate patient comfort”

Dr. Elena Vasileiadi Drakotou from Ygeia Iatriki Apeikonisi diagnostic centre in Greece simply loves the Planmed Clarity™ 3D digital breast tomosynthesis system. “It is easy to use, offers incomparable patient experience and – most importantly – provides excellent diagnostic accuracy,” she describes.

Planmed Clarity 3D

Could you tell us a little bit about yourself and your background?

My name is Elena Vasileiadi Drakotou and I am a radiologist. I studied at the University of Athens Medical School, specialised in Radiology at the Alexandra General hospital and Aretaieion University hospital in Athens, and successfully finished my PhD in Radiology. Since 1997, I have co-owned and acted as the president of a private diagnostic centre called Ygeia Iatriki Apeikonisi in Larissa, Central Greece. Our centre provides all the modalities: MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), CT (computed tomography), mammography, ultrasound, X-rays, and DEXA (bone densitometry). For the last two years, we have been working with the Planmed Clarity™ 3D digital mammography tomosynthesis unit. It is the only 3D mammography system in our city, so we already have plenty of cases.

How has the Planmed Clarity 3D system answered to your needs on mammography service?

The Planmed Clarity 3D system has helped us in many ways. First of all, it is very easy for the mammographers to use. The touch screens and the side access has made their workflow easier.

Secondly, the MaxView™ breast positioning system has not only helped us visualise a larger area of the breast and the pectoral muscle, but has also contributed to easier, better and reproducible positioning. This is very important – necessary even – when you want to compare between the new and the former 3D mammogram of a woman.

Furthermore, the Planmed Clarity 3D system has significantly increased our image quality and thus our diagnostic accuracy. It has offered us better lesion visibility and conspicuousness, which is essential in a high-quality mammography system.

What is the best thing about the Planmed Clarity 3D solution?

If I had to choose one, I would say image quality. That is always our first priority. The Continuous Sync-and-Shoot method produces unbelievably clear tomosynthesis images. You even have a great visibility of microcalcifications. The images are not blurry at all. They are like real 2D images cut in thin slices, not computer-produced artificial images.

What are the most challenging issues for your clinician team in providing mammography service? How can a good mammography system assist you in the work environment?

I had been working with 2D mammography for 10 years in our department. At the same time, I often worked with breast MRI. I frequently had to check a woman with a suspicious lesion on both modalities, and sometimes the differences between these two were significant. Using MRI, you realise what you miss on 2D mammography. One of the main reasons you miss something is the tissue overlap. That is why I wanted a better mammography system and for the same reason I turned to 3D. With the Planmed Clarity 3D system, I am really able to see more. I have better lesion visibility and conspicuousness, which has increased my diagnostic accuracy. That has really assisted me in my work environment.

What are the features you like about your own Planmed Clarity 3D the most? Why?

The greatest thing about my Planmed Clarity 3D unit is that everybody has loved it from day one! Women love it because it is so patient-friendly and compact. It also has a great design, and the new soft paddle really makes a difference to them.

My radiographers love it because the touch screens, the MaxView and the side access make it so effortless to use from the first day.

And of course, I love it because it has made my everyday life much easier. I see more things, I can characterise them easier and I need less ultrasound. All in all, I feel safer.

Why did you select the Planmed Clarity 3D as your system?

The truth is that before deciding on which system to choose I familiarised myself with the 3D mammography systems of all the suppliers in the market.

What I liked about Planmed Clarity 3D was, first of all, the image quality, as well as the fact that the images look so clear and natural. I don’t have a feeling that they are artificial or over-enhanced.

I must admit that I loved the device from the moment I saw it. It looked different – modern, compact, user-friendly, and easy to handle. I am especially happy to see that women also feel the same way about it. Mammography is a procedure that causes stress to most of the women. With Planmed’s system, we can help them feel more comfortable.

Elena Vasileiadi Drakotou