Quality Problems with Mammograms at Coastal Diagnostic Center-Pisma Beach, CA

FDA MedWatch – Mammograms at Coastal Diagnostic Center in Pismo Beach, California: FDA Safety Communication – Quality Problems

Mammograms at Coastal Diagnostic Center in Pismo Beach, California: FDA Safety Communication – Quality Problems

AUDIENCE: Patient, Radiology, Oncology, OBGYN, Family Practice

ISSUE: The FDA is alerting patients who had mammograms at Coastal Diagnostic Center located in Pismo Beach, California anytime on or after February 24, 2013, about possible problems with the quality of their mammograms. The American College of Radiology (ACR), conducted a clinical image review of mammograms performed by Coastal Diagnostic Center between February 24, 2013 and February 24, 2015. The review was conducted after deficiencies were noted in the clinical cases that were submitted with the facility’s accreditation renewal application. The ACR revoked the facility’s accreditation effective April 10, 2015.

This does not mean that the results of the mammograms were inaccurate, but it does mean that the patients should consider having their mammograms re-evaluated at a Mammography Quality Standards Act (MQSA)-certified facility to determine if the patients need a repeat mammogram or additional medical follow-up. Patients have the right to request their mammogram and copies of their medical reports from Coastal Diagnostic Center.

On April 24, 2015, the FDA required the facility to notify all patients who received mammograms at Coastal Diagnostic Center any time on or after February 24, 2013, and their referring health care providers, about the problems with the mammography quality at the facility.

BACKGROUND: Under the Mammography Quality Standards Act of 1992, the FDA requires that all mammography facilities meet certain baseline quality standards and be certified to legally operate in the United States. This facility did not meet standards for mammography quality under the Act. The facility may no longer legally perform mammography at this time due to the revocation of its accreditation by the ACR and its MQSA certification being no longer in effect.

RECOMMENDATION: The FDA recommends the following for patients who had a mammogram at Coastal Diagnostic Center any time on or after February 24, 2013:

If you have had a more recent mammogram at a MQSA-certified facility since then, you should follow the recommendations from that facility.
If you have not had a mammogram at an MQSA-certified facility since then, follow these guidelines:
Talk with your health care provider as soon as possible about the need for a follow-up exam
If your health care provider recommends a repeat mammogram, it should be done at an MQSA-certified facility to ensure quality and accuracy. A database of MQSA-certified facilities in your area is available online or by calling the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) information number at 1-800-422-6237.
If you need a repeat mammogram and your health insurance will not pay for it, you can call the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) information number at 1-800-422-6237 for a listing of MQSA-certified facilities near you that will provide free or low- cost mammograms.
Read the MedWatch safety alert, including a link to the FDA Safety Communication, at:




  1. Gee whiz. In the olden days, we went for our annual physical, which included a breast exam by a highly trained professional. Nowadays, doctors don’t even ask you to say “ah,” let alone examine your breasts… Eeew, touching sensitive parts of the anatomy! That’s for doctors… oh wait, I forgot. Doctors today send you for a mammogram. What they don’t tell you is that the combined amount of radiation, if you follow the current recommendations, just might give you cancer, especially if you’ve had a lot of other xrays.

    So when the biomedical technician hasn’t been around in a while and the machine gets uncalibrated, how many women are going to be sent for another painful and hazardous procedure?

    It used to be that 90% of cancers were found by women during self-exam. How many readers here have been taught self-exam? I bet not many, especially the younger generation, in these days of “hands-off” medicine. Self exam can find tumors less than one centimeter (about half an inch) in size, depending on breast size, tissue density, scarring from fibrocystic disease, or previous surgery. It requires us to get to know our breasts, what they feel like and look like, so that we will know if any changes occur. If you have not been taught this life-saving procedure, look up your local nurse-midwife or women’s clinic and get educated.

    That’s my cracker box–I’ll step down now. Thanks for the heads-up!!!


    1. Hi friend
      I’m in DC for a doctor’s appt., my list is getting longer than yours. Something to brag about right? I have a great Mamo doctor but I have know idea about kids today. I can’t relate, I think there mostly spoiled brats than run the household. What 9 yr old needs a cell phone?
      Later Gater
      Keep on rolling


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