The treatment of breast cancer and other benign breast conditions has come a long way in recent years.  As technology has advanced, breast conservation treatment (BCT) has become more possible. BCT focuses on removing only the abnormal tissue in the breast, rather than the entire breast.

In the past, women who were candidates for BCT underwent a procedure known as wire localization just prior to surgery. This procedure involved the patient coming to the radiology department upon arrival to the hospital to have a thin wire inserted into the breast at the site of concern, using either mammogram or ultrasound guidance.

Wire localization uses local anesthesia and must be performed just an hour or two before the surgery, creating a longer preoperative course on a day that is already stressful for a patient.

Recent advances have now offered another option to patients and surgeons to perform localization as an alternative to traditional wire placement.  Now, using a device called SAVI SCOUT®, localization can be performed weeks to months in an outpatient setting prior to the surgical date. This means that on the day of breast surgery, the patient has a shorter preoperative hospital course, with one less procedure.

“We’re excited to bring this new technology to our patients,” says Sonya Kella, MD, director of Women’s Imaging at Adventist HealthCare. “It will mean more flexibility and comfort for patients, and more reliability for our physicians.”

What is SAVI SCOUT®?

SAVI SCOUT® is a safe, clinically proven, FDA-approved alternative procedure to wire localization. It involves implanting a reflector—a small device the size of a grain of rice—into the tumor or lesion within the breast.  It can be implanted using local anesthesia many weeks prior to surgery, comfortably in a radiologist’s outpatient facility.

How does SAVI SCOUT® work?

The reflector emits a tiny amount of non-radioactive energy that is not harmful to the body. On the day of surgery, the surgeon will use a device on the breast (similar to an ultrasound probe) to locate the reflector. This gives the surgeon a more direct approach for removing the abnormal tissue than a traditional wire allowsThe SAVI SCOUT® device is removed at the time of surgery. As a result, less of the healthy tissue in the breast is removed.

Why use SAVI SCOUT® versus more traditional methods?

SAVI SCOUT® is completely safe and radiation-free and can be implanted weeks or longer prior to the actual surgery, based on the patient’s convenience.

“The last thing a patient wants is to arrive at the hospital several hours early, on an empty stomach, to undergo an extra procedure while they are awake and anxiously awaiting having surgery on their breast,” says Cynthia Plate, MD, a breast surgeon with Adventist HealthCare.  This new technology offers women a more convenient way to remove breast abnormalities, reducing anxiety, wait times and procedure pain. The SAVI SCOUT® is now being offered at Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Breast Center and Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center as part of the health system’s comprehensive breast care program.

We would like to thank the generous donations, especially from EagleBank, that helped Adventist HealthCare offer this advanced technology to improve patient care and outcomes.

Adventist HealthCare Imaging offers quality imaging services such as mammography, MRI, ultrasound and SPECT/CT at several Montgomery County locations.