Get Your Dense Breasts Checked with ABUS

15th February 2012

Back in 1996, I had a cyst removed from my left breast.

I noticed it one day in the shower. I was too young to know that I should have been terrified.

I made an appointment to have it looked at, when it had grown so much that it had created a visible bump on my breast.

I had a mammogram but because I have dense breasts, I also had an ultrasound. It was clear, but I still wanted it removed.

It was a outpatient procedure – so at 23, I went to the hospital alone to have the cyst removed.

It turned out that this cyst that everyone thought was quite small, ended up being larger than a golf ball.

It left a terrible scar, and if I push on my breast where the cyst was, even today, I still feel the emptiness that cyst filled at one point.

However, the scar means nothing to me when it comes to my life, so I’m absolutely glad I did it.

Fast forward, 12 years, and two beautiful kids later, and I’m scared.

I’m scared every day, and every time I read about another woman finding a lump, getting sick or dying, my heart breaks for them, and for everyone they love.

That’s why I’m writing this post today – to feel less scared, and to support women taking control of their lives by being proactive and getting screened.

My friend Dee, who proves everyday that she is one strong, ballsy woman, is featured in a new video that features ABUS ultrasound screening. In the video, she gets a breast ultrasound at VIP Breast Imaging because she has dense breasts, as do I.

ABUS is specifically designed for breast ultrasound screening and diagnosis.  In one sweep of the machine, ABUS is able to take 600 images of the breast tissue and captures images approximately every two millimetres.  Unlike hand-held ultrasounds which can only capture specific areas of the breast, ABUS captures the entire breast in 3 dimensions, providing a much more detailed scan.

The ABUS ultrasound is not covered and costs $300, however your insurance policy may cover some of the procedure. It is also tax deductible. For more information, please contact VIP Breast Imaging at 525 University Avenue in Toronto  –, 647-350-2229.

Please watch Dee’s video:

Disclaimer: I was offered a free ABUS screening in exchange for this post.

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12 thoughts on “Get Your Dense Breasts Checked with ABUS

  1. Melissa

    Thank you for posting this. Your site is the first place I’ve seen the price of the ABUS ultrasound posted (I couldn’t find it on VIP’s site which surprised me.)

    I had a regular ultrasound to check out something that turned out to be a fibroadenoma. It’s amazing (and scary, really) how many stories are coming out during this campaign. If more talking leads to more checking, that is a good and valuable thing.

  2. Kameron

    How do you know if you have dense breasts? It is kind of scary since they told me I don’t need a mamogram until 35! You were only 23? It seems they should start them earlier than they do.

    1. MARIA Post author

      It’s something your doctor will be able to tell you. Mine told me after a breast exam but it was confirmed after the mammogram.

    2. Dr Tina Ureten

      Hi Kameron,
      The best tool to diagnose dense breast is mammogram. It also shows how much of your breast is dense. The higher percentage of dense breast puts you under higher risk for cancer. Also density changes with age, as we get older our breasts get more fatty and less dense.

  3. Dee Brun

    OMG Maria you made me cry…DAMN YOU…xoxo
    Fab post and thank you so much for sharing your story…I know it will help women to face their own lumps and bumps with knowledge and courage…


    1. MARIA Post author

      Thanks for reading it Dee, and thank you for being a part of such an important video – I am honored to even talk about it.

  4. christie

    Hi Maria!

    Just found your blog today and impressed with all the useful information! Thank you for sharing this one too. Pardon me for digressing a bit but wanted to know how you are doing with WW? From the comments, I see that they have been missing you witty notes. It got me into thinking about joining in too; maybe sign up online? I’m 47 and noticed I’ve ballooned in the last year! Slower metabolism and no exercise. I just don’t know if I can make a long term commitment. Any words of advice?

    You’re doing a great job, Maria! I wish you and your family love, peace and good health!


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