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Early Catch: Dianne Munroe’s 3D Mammogram Story

As a longtime healthcare employee, Dianne Munroe knows the importance of regular cancer screenings. During the three decades she spent as facilities director for Highline Medical Center, her mammograms were routine and uneventful.

When the time came for her regular mammogram in 2016, though, Dianne adjusted her routine. She opted to put her mammogram off for a few months while she waited for the highly anticipated 3D mammography technology that was coming to Franciscan Breast Center - Burien.

When Burien’s 3D mammograms became available, Dianne went in. She felt as healthy as ever, so she was surprised when the sophisticated imaging revealed a small cancerous lump in her breast.

Dianne’s breast cancer was caught early and hadn’t spread to other organs, but still required swift treatment. From there, Dianne says Highline’s medical community wrapped around her, ushering her through her diagnosis, answering her questions, and assisting with follow-up care.

Right away, Dianne saw Virginia Mason Franciscan Health surgical oncologist Dr. Ani Fleisig, MD, to discuss her options. Dr. Fleisig performed Dianne’s lumpectomy in September 2016. Soon after, Dianne started a month of radiation therapy at Highline Cancer Center. “My care was just excellent all around,” she says. “I didn’t know Ani Fleisig, but I had an appointment with her the next day and I was treated like I was her most important patient.”

Today, Dianne’s good health allows her to enjoy her recent retirement and spend time caring for her mother, who also experienced early-stage breast cancer years ago. She encourages women to keep up with regular mammograms, even if they feel fine and have no reason to suspect cancer. “I would recommend Highline to anyone and in fact, I do, all the time,” she says. “When someone I know needs a mammogram, I’ll tell them ‘Highline is right here and they have everything you need.’”

“They have great care, great people, and great follow-up. They just do an excellent job.”