October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which brings up the importance of breast imaging.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, some women delayed getting mammograms. As a result, doctors are seeing patients coming in with more locally advanced cancer.

According to board certified radiologist Dr. Jean Warner, Director, The Tyanna O'Brien Center for Women's Imaging at Mercy, screening mammography gives you the best chance of not dying from breast cancer and also makes you a candidate for less aggressive treatment if you were to get cancer.

"Women who are at average risk for getting breast cancer should be getting annual mammograms every year beginning at age 40," Dr. Warner said. In addition, women should have a risk assessment by the time they turn 30 to see if they are high risk for breast cancer. If you are, you may need to start mammograms sooner.

It is especially important for Black, Hispanic and Jewish women who have a higher-than-average chance of having genetic abnormalities that predispose them to getting breast cancer.

According to Dr. Warner, Mercy offers patients tomosynthesis or 3-D mammography.


Jean K. Warner, M.D. is Director of The Tyanna O'Brien Center for Women's Imaging at Mercy in Baltimore. A Board Certified radiologist, Dr. Warner has extensive experience in breast imaging, including digital mammographybreast ultrasound and breast MRI. She also has experience in all image-guided interventional procedures and takes a multidisciplinary approach to the diagnosis and treatment of breast disease. Dr. Warner and her team work in close collaboration with the breast surgeons of The Hoffberger Breast Center at Mercy.