SOURCE: Northwell Health Cancer Institute

Northwell Health Cancer Institute

July 12, 2016 09:09 ET

New Breast Surgical Guidance System Improves Localizing Tumor, Patient Experience

Northwell Health Physicians Are First on Long Island and Queens to Use Breast Localization and Surgical Guidance System

LAKE SUCCESS, NY--(Marketwired - July 12, 2016) - Breast surgeons and radiologists at the Northwell Health Cancer Institute have introduced a new breast localization and surgical system to patients. The technology, recently cleared by the US Food and Drug Administration, allows physicians to insert a tiny device into the breast to target diseased tissue up to a week before surgery.

Until now, women needed to show up several hours before their operation to have physicians thread a wire into their breast, and then wait. The technology, called SAVI SCOUT®, eliminates this waiting time and the discomfort of the wire. The system uses sound and visual indicators to precisely locate the SCOUT reflector. It is being used during lumpectomy and surgical biopsy procedure.

"Breast cancer surgery or biopsy can be physically and emotionally distressing for women," said Karen Kostroff, MD, chief of breast surgery at Northwell Health. "We continually strive to offer the most advanced technology and find ways to create a better experience for our patients. The SCOUT resolves one of the most difficult aspects of breast conservation surgery by eliminating the need to place a wire inside the breast tissue to locate a tumor."

The device uses non-radioactive, micro impulse radar technology to provide real-time surgical guidance during breast surgery. Placed up to seven days before surgery by a radiologist, the half inch-sized reflector is inserted into the breast. During surgery, the system's hand piece accurately detects the location of the reflector -- and the tumor. The ability to strategically plan the incision may result in less tissue removed during surgery, resulting in better cosmetic outcomes.

Ellen Gallin-Procida, a patient of Dr. Kostroff's for the last five years, underwent three breast-conserving surgeries using the wire localization technique. "You're already under stress and frightened getting a breast biopsy," Ms. Gallin-Procida said. "It's uncomfortable to sit for a long time with a wire sticking out of your breast even though it's covered in gauze."

Ms. Gallin-Procida, 58, of Cortlandt Manor, Westchester, was one of the first patients at Northwell's Cancer Institute to receive the wireless, radar system during a breast biopsy.

Dr. Kostroff explained the new technology to Ms. Gallin-Procida and she was all for it. "For my recent biopsy, I was checked in for surgery with the reflector having already been inserted days earlier," she explained. "This time I had a lot less anxiety and discomfort before surgery without a wire sticking out of me."

Ms. Gallin-Procida, a New York City educator, has received several breast biopsies because she has a condition that may put her at a higher-than-average risk for getting breast cancer at some point in the future. "I met Dr. Kostroff when I lived on Long Island. After moving to Westchester, I trust my care to her because she is top-notch and caring," Ms. Gallin-Procida said.

According to Nina Vincoff, MD, chief of breast imaging at Northwell Health, "We are proud to be the first hospital system on Long Island and Queens to use the new SCOUT technology during breast conservation surgeries."

Dr. Vincoff explained that the new breast surgical guidance system significantly improves patient comfort and convenience. "The SCOUT localization can be scheduled at a time that is convenient for the patient," Dr. Vincoff said. "In the future we plan to offer this procedure at other Northwell sites, so that patients can have the reflector placed at both a time and a location that works best for them."

For more information please contact, Dr. Karen Kostroff at 516-775-7676. For the Breast Cancer Center at the Northwell Health Cancer Institute, please call: 855-858-8550. To learn more about SAVI SCOUT, please contact Erich Sandoval on behalf of Cianna Medical at or 917-497-2867.

About Northwell Health
Northwell Health (formerly North Shore-LIJ Health System) is New York State's largest health care provider and private employer. With 21 hospitals and nearly 450 outpatient practices, we serve more than 1.8 million people annually in the metro New York area and beyond. Our 61,000 employees work to change health care for the better. We're making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institute. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine and the School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. And we offer health insurance through CareConnect. For information on our services in more than 100 medical specialties, visit

The FDA-cleared SCOUT system features micro-impulse radar to detect a reflector that is placed at the tumor site up to seven days before a lumpectomy or surgical biopsy. During the procedure, the surgeon scans the breast using the SCOUT handpiece, which emits infrared light and a micro-impulse signal to detect the location of the reflector. Real-time audible and visual indicators assist the surgeon in accurately locating the reflector, along with the target tissue. This higher level of localization precision allows the surgeon to plan a surgical approach that may result in a better cosmetic outcome.

For more information, call 866-920-9444 or visit

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