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CLEVELAND, OH (NBC) - The quality of mammograms improved dramatically when imaging devices went from analog to digital. Now, mammograms are about to take another big step forward, moving from digital to 3-D.

Doctors at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio, are performing 3-D mammograms. Patient Joann Laurent had one. "I felt like it was less painful, that's for sure," Laurent said.

The new technology is called tomosynthesis.

Tomosynthesis allows radiologist Donna Plecha to get a more detailed view. Instead of the standard four images from the x-ray, she's seeing about 200.

"And the benefit is we have decreased call back rates so there's less women getting called back for additional imaging and also our cancer detection rates should be higher. We should be able to find cancer smaller and at earlier stages so we have a better chance of cure," said Dr. Plecha.