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San Ramon Regional opens new breast cancer center

Advanced digital mammography, computer-aided detection technology part of state-of-art facility

San Ramon Regional Medical Center opened its new Breast Center Saturday, offering patients state-of-the-art imaging technology.

The hospital will offer tours to the community and a special breast health seminar Wednesday, Nov. 11. Tours will be given from 6:30-7:30 p.m. and a seminar will be held from 7:30 to 9 p.m., featuring speakers Yuriria Lobato, a radiologist and lead interpreting mammographer, and Rishi Sawhney, a medical oncologist, who will discuss research about avoiding breast cancer.

A ribbon-cutting for the center was held Thursday night to celebrate the opening.

Tim Ulrich, who is director of diagnostic imaging at the center, said female patients will get the best care around.

"We offer a real 20-minute procedure," he said of the mammograms offered. "Most hospitals say they offer that, but then they start helping another patient 10 minutes into your visit. Here, you get 20 minutes of free, individual time. We also offer screenings for women with breast implants."

Featured at the Breast Center, located in the South Building of the hospital campus at 7777 Norris Canyon Road, are two digital mammography units, computer-aided detection technology that can better detect calcifications in the breast tissue, ultrasounds, ductography, bone density scans, x-rays and a stereotactic biopsy room.

Ulrich said the hospital conducts 90,000 mammograms per year, an average of 35 per day. Patients are already signed up for services beginning this weekend.

He said the stereotactic biopsy machine is not offered in many area hospitals.

"This is something necessary and needed, something not offered in the community," he said. "I have four patients already scheduled for next week."

"This machine is a lot less invasive," he continued. "The patient doesn't need full sedation."

Kari Chandler, a supervisor at the new center, said the facility caters to women and has a doctor on-site, which isn't common.

"It's exciting," she said. "It's going to help patients have a comfort level here. Monday through Friday, there will be a doctor on staff. There's no waiting game."

San Ramon Mayor H. Abram Wilson, who attended the ribbon-cutting Thursday, praised the new center, saying it's not just for women, but for families.

"We are so blessed to have a facility like this in the Valley," he said. "When you hit a wall, to be able to walk in here and know someone cares, that's half the battle."

Reservations are required for the community event Nov. 11. Call 800-284-2878 or visit www.oursanramonhospital.com for information.

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