Dr. Elsie Levin

Boston Breast Diagnostic Center, Founder

You have more than 20 years and 20,000 breast MRIs under your belt. What made you want to leave the traditional health care industry to start your own breast imaging center?

Hospitals, by their nature, tend to be stressful. Put anxious women in a small space together, and even if you weren't nervous coming in, you probably are now! I wanted to create a comfortable, safe environment for personalized breast imaging services. Everyone thought it was a risk to go out on my own, but my patients are extremely happy, and so am I.

In what ways have you been involved with the greater Boston community?

We've offered services and funding to national nonprofits like Bright Pink, FORCE and the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare. This past fall I spoke at an event at Circle Furniture in Framingham for the Ellie Fund, which provides nonmedical needs like transportation and meals to women diagnosed with breast cancer. It's difficult enough to get a diagnosis, so we do our best to help support organizations that assist women with paying additional expenses associated with it.

How else do you do things differently at Boston Breast Diagnostic Center?

One thing I'm proud of is that no matter what the patient is here for — mammogram, MRI, ultrasound — they will get the results before leaving. Many women will tell you that the worst part of the process is not knowing. The other day a patient was actually upset because I returned her results before she had finished reading her magazine. When I told her she could stick around, she made herself some coffee, went back to the waiting room and lounged in her bathrobe for a while. That sort of thing doesn't happen everywhere!

Favorite hobby

Because I'm (literally) in a dark room all day, I love being outside. In the spring and summer, you'll often find me gardening in my backyard.

Favorite neighborhood in Boston

Fenway. Even though it's been a difficult year, I am still a huge Red Sox fan. Whenever any patients give me presents, it tends to be Sox gear — no complaints here!

For more information about Dr. Elsie Levin and Boston Breast Diagnostic Center, please visit http://bostonbdc.com/