19500 Sandridge Way
Lansdowne, Virginia 20176
IMPORTANT OFFICE INFORMATION DURING THE PANDEMIC
***NEW INFORMATION AS OF March 3, 2021***
Until the COVID risk has started to significantly decline, I will not be scheduling many "routine" office follow up visits. It is not worth the potential risk. When you make your appointments, you will be asked more intensive screening questions. Please be honest with your answers. As usual we will of course see anyone with a suspcious mammogram, abnormal biopsy, or other appropriate clinical concern, but for now, routine visits will have to wait. However, PLEASE CONTNUE TO GET YOUR APPROPRIATE BREAST IMAGING.
Also, we are happy to have other family members/support persons be virtually present via video during your appointment, but in order to keep the traffic in the office down to a minimum, only the person whose appointment it is will be allowed into the office. There may come a time when we ask you to wait in your car and then invite you into the office when we are ready for you to go directly to your appointment, but we are not instituting this at this time. Please remember there are patients actively receiving their chemotherapy in our office, and we must protect them.
It is possible that we may see a shutdown on services at imaging centers again if the COVID numbers rise, but at this time, no imaging centers have indicated that this is planned for the near future. If that happens, I will post it here.
PLEASE LOOK AT THE "IMPORTANT ARTICLES" PAGE ON THE WEBSITE, data prove that missing your annual mammogram INCREASES the risk of death from breast cancer. Do not put off your screening over COVID fears. I definitely am seeing an increase in advanced cancers becasue of delayed screening.
Regarding COVID Vaccination:
If you have the opportunity to get vaccinated against Covid, PLEASE DO SO! Please also be aware that there are people who temporarily react to the vaccine by getting swollen lymph nodes in the armpit on the side of the vaccination a few days after the shot. If you have had breast cancer in the past, please get the injection on the OPPOSITE side from where your cancer was, so clinically there is not confusion over whether the cancer has recurred in the lymph nodes. THE COVID VACCINE DOES NOT CAUSE BREAST CANCER, but it can make the nodes enlarge, and some have misinterpreted this effect, and implied the vaccination caused cancer. This is incorrect. The enlarged nodes can result in misinterpretation of your breast imaging, but generally radiologists have become aware of this phenomenon. If you feel that you have had this reaction, the node swelling will regress after a few days but can persist a couple of weeks. If you wish to delay your mammogram because of this side effect, so there is no confusion over the mammogram results, as mammograms do include images of the nodes, please do not delay your mammogram longer than 4 weeks to stay on schedule with your screenings. (See the "Important Articles" page!)
UPDATE ON WHAT YOU NEED TO BRING TO YOUR VISIT:
This info is copied from another page in the website, just to be certain as many of you can see it as possible.
Breast images are now accessible to physicians through secure portals at all radiology centers. This allows images to be accessed through a computer. Because of this, we no longer require that you pick up any films or CDs of imaging for your office visit, unless the imaging was done out of the area. We also access the radiology reports in this manner. Below is a list of facilities for which we have computer portal access.:
Reston Radiology: Loudoun Imaging in Ashburn, Fair Oaks Imaging Center, Womens Imaging Center of Reston (on the Reston Hospital Campus)
Fairfax Radiology - all locations are accessible, including Inova Loudoun Hospital, the Cornwall campus, and what used to be called RIA in Lansdowne and CountrySide/Sterling (these are now part of Inova/Fairfax Radiology)
Washington Radiology - all locations are accessible
Progressive Radiology in Winchester
I DO NOT have computer access to imaging from: Winchester Medical Center, Novant facilities including Haymarket, Prince William Hospital, Fauquier Hospital, Virginia Hospital Center, George Washington Hospital system, Medstar Georgetown Hospital system, Medstar Washington Hosptial Center, Johns Hopkins System/Sibley. Imaging from these sites MUST be provided on CD. If your facility is not on either list, please call our office before your visit to discuss how we can see your imaging.
AN IMPORTANT WORD ABOUT DIGITAL AND 3D BREAST IMAGING:
When viewing breast images via computer, please be aware that the image quality is NOT THE SAME as what the interpreting radiologist sees, as the radiology viewing system is very sophisticated and of significantly higher resolution than monitors outside of the imaging center. In that regard, it is sometimes difficult for me to render a completely independent review of your images. If that is true in your case, I will discuss it with you after I review your images in the office.
The 3D portion of a 3D mammogram is read dynamically by scrolling through a series of images rapidly, much like a video, and your eye is drawn in and out of the tissue uncovering the anatomy better than a single flat (2D) image. Until recently, the 3D portion of a mammogram study could be scrolled through ONLY ON THEY SYSTEM WHERE IT WAS RECORDED, ie, only in the imaging center where it was taken, NOT via computer outside of the imaging system. HOWEVER, Loudoun Imaging Center in Ashburn and FairOaks Imaging Center have software that allows me to scroll through the images remotely, thankfully! The only other site for which I can do this is Progressive Radiology in Winchester. Therefore, for local imaging needs you may wish to consider having your imaging done at Loudoun Imaging in Ashburn, (or Fair Oaks Imaging Center for our Reston/Herndon/Chantilly area patients) so I can see what the radiologist sees, and not just the 2D portion of your study. When our new office facility opens and the imaging department in the office is up and running, I will have an actual complete radiology workstation on which to view images, and will be able to see everything the radiologists from Loudoun Imaging or Fair Oaks Imaging can see, including the dynamic 3D imaging, with the same high resolution with which they interpret breast images!
OTHER OFFICE INFORMATION DURING THE PANDEMIC
You are required to wear a covering over your nose and mouth when coming to the office. If you do nothave an appropriate medical mask, we can provide you one at the front desk.
As a physician, my vocation is one of dedication to protecting you from illness. Please do your part to help protect me, as well (I am over 60 so in the at-increased-risk age group): Do not come to the office if you have a temperature of 100 or greater. Do not bring children or friends to your visit.
Do not come to the office if you have cough, shortness of breath, or any respiratory symptoms, fever, new body aches, nausea/GI upset, have been near a "healthy" person who has tested positive, if you have been near a COVID sufferer, if you have anyone near to you who has been to the highest affected areas such as New York, or other large cities. Please wait for 2 weeks to be seen if you have traveled on a plane.
We need to work together to kick this COVID thing in the pants. Be safe, keep each other safe, and do not believe the snake oil salesmen when there is information about supplements or treatments you can buy to prevent or cure this illness. NONE of it is medically proved to help. PREVENTION is our best protection.
Best meme I've seen lately: "Do not change your behavior to avoid being infected, assume you are infected, and change your behavior to avoid transmitting".
Check back to this page frequently, I will keep it updated as things evolve.
Thanks in advance for your patience.
Virginia Chiantella MD FACS