Breast Imaging Highlights


Breast MRI - UCSF Medical
Among the first centers in the United States to perform breast MRI

We now have more than 15 years of experience with this sensitive imaging technique. UCSF's 3T Breast MR scanner has higher field strength which provides superior image quality and for better detection of breast cancer (carcinoma) and benign abnormalities. The 3T Breast MR technology also creates a less claustrophobic feeling since the scanner has a wider opening and thus improves patient comfort.

First in the United States to offer breast MRI biopsy with the Vanguard table

We offer Breast MRI biopsies using the Vanguard dedicated biopsies table, which can prevent the need for the patient to make a return visit by allowing multi-site and bilateral breast biopsies.

World’s newest tools and methods

We can take samples as small as a group of cells to perform speedy and accurate breast biopsies using the latest tools and methods.

American Cancer Society Guidelines

We follow the American Cancer Society guidelines that recommend yearly mammographic screening for women starting at the age of 40. The recommendations of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which are followed at some other facilities, cause some patients to wait two years between mammograms, during which time cancer can be advancing prior to detection, diagnosis, and treatment. Watch video of UCSF radiologist Dr. Bonnie Joe’s recommendation on mammography screening guidelines.

Mammography Quality Standards Act

We adhere to the guidelines of the Mammography Quality Standards Act that is certified by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and we are accredited by the American College of Radiology (ACR).

Specialized training and certification

All of our breast imaging physicians are certified by the American Board of Radiology as specialists in breast imaging.  At UCSF, all mammograms and other breast imaging exams are interpreted by expert physicians who have advanced and specialized training in both radiology and diseases of the breast and who are specifically skilled in detecting and recognizing breast disease. This is different from many other imaging locations, where breast imaging exams may be interpreted by general radiologists.

Offer access to the UCSF Breast Cancer Prevention Program 

This program provides access to experts in the field of breast cancer prevention, including physicians, nurse practitioners, genetic counselors, and researchers.

Recognized leader in clinical and research trials

We are a recognized leader in multi-institutional clinical breast cancer trials and breast imaging research. Learn about two innovative breast cancer clinical trials at UCSF.

Leader in breast imaging program

We have a 35 year record as a world-renowned breast imaging program, continuing the model developed by renowned radiologist Edward A. Sickles, MD.


Integral member of the healthcare delivery team

We work in close collaboration with other physician specialties, including experts in surgery, oncology, radiation oncology, obstetrics and gynecology, and internal medicine. Our breast imaging specialists work regularly with physicians in the greater community, not only with physicians at UCSF.

Sickles Reviewing Exam - UCSF Medical