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The new Smart Curve paddle is curved to match the contour of the breast. Jamei June at Bellevue Medical Imaging said this new design delivers the same quality image of the breast but with less compression. (KOMO News){ }

BELLEVUE, Wash. -- A mammogram is one of the best ways to detect breast cancer, yet many women fail to get one, because it hurts.

In order to get a good image during a mammogram the breast must be compressed, traditionally under a flat paddle.

But the new Smart Curve paddle is just that, curved to match the contour of the breast.

Jamei June at Bellevue Medical Imaging said this new design delivers the same quality image of the breast but with less compression.

"Patients have been raving about it and we've done many surveys most of them have said it's absolutely not painful at all,” she said.

Smart Curve comes in two shapes, to accommodate large and smaller breast shapes.

Eugenia Dorn gets her annual mammogram at Bellevue Medical Imaging, dreading it every time she has to go.

“Every year I come to get a mammogram even though it's not comfortable and I dread it and usually I'm just beside myself,” she said.

She wouldn’t dare skip it however, since her annual mammogram in 2011 ended with a breast cancer diagnoses. Now that she’s experienced the Smart Curve mammogram, Dorn said she won’t mind coming back next year.

“No I will not dread one moment about it think goodness,” said Dorn.

Mammogram Technologist Cathy Grant said most of her patients feel the same.

"I mean they really come in anxious because of the compression,” she said.

Now she said she’s even had a few patients ask at the end of the procedure if they’re really done.

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