NLH Going Pink

NLH Going Pink

GLOVERSVILLE, NY – This October, Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home is focused on increasing awareness for breast cancer prevention. According to, breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in women. Roughly one in eight women born in the United States will develop breast cancer in their lives. Studies have also shown that women with dense breasts are more likely to have or develop cancer. However, most women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early.

In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Littauer is creating a marketing campaign to move beyond mammogram education and to include conversation about breast density.

“With the recent installation of Invenia ABUS 2.0™ at Littauer, it is much easier to detect breast cancer in addition with a regular mammogram,” says Dwayne Eberle, Director of Diagnostic Imaging. “The ABUS 2.0™ has improved breast cancer detection by an estimated 36 percent. I am thrilled that we can now offer ABUS, a leading edge technology, to women with dense breasts. This simple 15 minute procedure will save lives in our community.”

“ABUS Ultrasound for dense breasts is our newest example of supporting our patients,” says Priscilla. “With the capability to further test women with dense breasts for abnormalities which can hide in regular Mammography, this can and will save lives. Everyone who has their mammogram with Littauer will receive a special gift from our Diagnostic Imaging department, too. We want to show women that we are here for them and let them know that having their mammograms is vitally important.”

“Some organizations and hospitals display pink ribbons for Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” says Cheryl McGrattan, Vice President of Marketing and Communications with Littauer. “We build whole new centers and bring in the best technology to prevent breast cancer. For us at Littauer, we think pink all year long.”

Talk to your doctor about breast density, especially if you have a history of breast or ovarian cancer. Your doctor can provide more information about mammograms. For more information about the new Invenia ABUS 2.0, please call Priscilla Person, Littauer’s Diagnostic Imaging Office Coordinator, at: (518) 773-5215 or visit:



About Nathan Littauer

Nathan Littauer Hospital and Nursing Home is a full-service, 74 bed acute care hospital with an 84 bed skilled nursing home. Since 1894, Nathan Littauer has provided safe, high-quality health and wellness services with a focus on securing appropriate new technologies for people residing in Upstate New York. Over the years, the hospital has expanded its services in order to offer health care that is comprehensive, accessible, and relevant to the needs of the communities they serve. More information can be found by visiting

Littauer teams with Susan G. Koman for life-saving mammograms

Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home has combined forces with Susan G. Koman, bringing top health care to the women of Hamilton County this winter season.  The goal – to encourage more North County women to get life-saving mammograms.

Women over 40 living in Hamilton County will receive a $40 Visa gift card after a breast screening. To qualify, Hamilton County women must call Littauer’s Women’s Health at the Perth Primary and Specialty Care Center at (518) 883-8634 by Dec. 31, 2014 to schedule a screening. After scheduling, the exam can take place after Dec. 31 and still qualify for the promotion. Women will receive the gift card as they leave their exam.

“Use the card for something special for you, for your family, but please take advantage of this special health incentive” said Cheryl McGrattan, Littauer’s Vice President of Marketing and Communications. “Just get here!”

Please call (518) 883-8634 by Feb.  28, 2015 to qualify. This project is paid for in part by the Susan B. Koman Foundation. The program is in partnership with Nathan Littauer Family of Health Services and Hamilton County Public Health. All services must be provided by Nathan Littauer Family of Health Services.


NLH Senior Mammographer Tammy Gerdes, displays Littauer’s new soft pad which allows for more patient comfort and ease of technical positioning for mammograms.

NLH Senior Mammographer Tammy Gerdes, displays Littauer’s new soft pad which allows for more patient comfort and ease of technical positioning for mammograms.

Wellness Words October 2012

HealthLink Littauer’s


Submitted by Carol Tomlinson RN BS

Community Health Educator



Breast cancer is an ancient disease.  It has been mentioned in every period of recorded history.  However, even with its profound significance, any discussion of breast cancer was only found in medical journals before the 1970’s.  Early treatments for this disease were rudimentary and often painful.  In 1810, Abigail Adams underwent a grueling mastectomy without anesthesia.  In the centuries since the first recorded mastectomy in 548 A.D., breast cancer has been treated with everything from castor oil to opium to various homemade salves. 

Starting in the mid-1800’s, radical mastectomy became the “gold standard.”  In 1949, a doctor became known for creating the super-radical mastectomy which removed the breast, lymph nodes, chest muscles and the internal mammary nodes even if the tumor’s size was only ½ an inch, leaving the patient deformed and in pain.  This treatment was continued until 1963.

As the ability to visualize the internal breast through technology began to develop, the thinking about and treatment of breast cancer changed radically.  By 1969 mammograms became available.  The development of radiation and chemotherapies also rose rapidly.  By 1976, the “gold standard” became a simpler, breast-conserving surgery followed by radiation and/or chemotherapy.  In the 21st century, less than 10% of women with breast cancer have a mastectomy according to the American Cancer Society (ACS).

Today, this disease is discussed openly and advances are shared worldwide.  Activism by such organizations as ACS, the National Cancer Institute and the Susan G. Komen Race For The Cure foundation have brought focus and much needed financial support for research and development of the best detection equipment and therapies.

There’s been an explosion of new life-saving treatment advances against breast cancer.  Instead of only one or two options, today there’s an overwhelming menu of treatment options.  Today’s level of radiation with mammography uses less than a dental x-ray, and discomfort during the procedure has been reduced by such things as the soft pad.  Additionally, breast cancer can be detected much earlier when the treatment is the most effective.

The currently most utilized treatments for breast cancer in theUSAinclude surgery (mastectomy or more commonly lumpectomy), radiation, chemotherapy, hormonal therapy and targeted therapy.  There are now various types and combinations of chemotherapies that can be used for a specific type of tumor.  Also, we now have 5 “targeted therapies” that target the specific characteristics of a cancer cell.  Recently, scientists also reported finding 4 types of breast cancer through genetic profiling.

The ultimate cure for this disease remains elusive due to its complex nature, but detection advances and treatments have proliferated in the 21st century giving women and men not only hope but also more choices about their treatment and recovery.  There are more than 2.9 million breast cancer survivors in theUSA today and the five year survival rate is 99% when the cancer is found early.

To learn more, attend a free program on “Advances In Breast Cancer Detection” presented by Littauer’s Chief of Radiology, Dr. Mike McBiles, on Thursday, October 18 from 6:30 – 8 p.m. in Littauer’s Auditorium.  Participans will enjoy delicious desserts and receive complimentary gift bags!  To attend, call HealthLink Littauer at 736-1120.

For more information, contact your healthcare provider, American Cancer Society at, or HealthLink Littauer at 736-1120.  You can e-mail us at, see our website at, or visit our wellness center at 213 Harrison Street Ext. in Johnstown, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.  We’re your community health & wellness service of Nathan Littauer Hospital and Nursing Home.

Stereotactic Breast Biopsies at Nathan Littauer means greater comfort and precision.

Women commenting on the new system

Gloversville, NY …Local women requiring biopsies to reexamine suspicious findings from their mammograms can now reap the benefits of state-of-the-art technology Littauer is using in their Diagnostic Imaging Center. The new stereotactic breast biopsy equipment is delivering greater comfort and precision to women during their breast biopsies.  It is the first technology of its kind available in the Fulton-Montgomery region. “We have already heard from women who have had biopsies on our old system and now our new system and they are very complimentary and grateful for this new technology” stated Priscilla Person who works at Littauer’s Diagnostic Imaging Center.

Women are commenting on new system

A Nathan Littauer Diagnostic Imaging staff member reviews an image of a stereotactic breast biopsy procedure performed at Littauer recently.

 The new equipment is ergonomically designed, allowing women to sit during the exam, well supported throughout the entire procedure. Dr. McBiles, Chief of Radiology explains, “As a radiologist comfort is paramount because greater patient comfort usually equates to better images and samples.”  He added, “The computer-guided technology gives us better precision requiring smaller tissue sampling.” Dr. McBiles, continued, “The entire procedure is shortened and our patients have reported very little discomfort. The incision is much smaller so there is little if any scarring and decreased pain.  Usually the entire procedure is completed within 45 minutes.”   

Another benefit? Women requiring a breast biopsy can avoid the operating room all together. Dr. McBiles explained, “We do biopsies in our newly renovated diagnostic imaging rooms. During the procedure, the patient sits in a specially designed, ergonomic chair, with the breast exposed. The digital machine takes focused images of the suspicious area which are viewed by the radiologist on the computer screen.  The equipment then pinpoints the exact location of the breast abnormality seen on earlier mammograms by using a computer and x-rays taken from different angles.” The doctor continued, “Using exact computer coordinates; the doctor determines the site for the biopsy and administers a local anesthetic – similar to what dentist’s use.  The tissue samples quickly secured with a vacuum-assisted device and the tissue samples are sent to the lab to be thoroughly examined.”  

Tammy Gerdes, who leads the mammogram unit for Littauer explains, “It all comes down to dignity and compassion. We strive with every exam to make our patients feel at ease and cared for. It is a stressful time.”  

The new technology was paid for with monies raised by the hospital’s Foundation. For more information on our advanced outpatient diagnostic radiology services people are encouraged to speak to their referring physician.