What is a Mammogram?
A mammogram is a low dose x-ray for the breast.
Why should I have a Mammogram?
A mammogram can detect cancers too small to be felt by the woman or her healthcare provider. Mammograms can also show changes in the breast tissue that could be an indication of a very early breast cancer. When used in conjunction with a physical examination of the breast, mammography has proven to be effective in saving lives.
Certain risk factors for breast cancer are:
- Being a woman
- Personal history of breast cancer
- Having a close family history of breast cancer (mother, daughter or sister)
- Genetic predisposition
- Excess weight
- Early onset of menstrual cycle
- Late menopause
- First pregnancy at older age
- Race - white women are more likely to develop breast cancer than black, Hispanic or Asian women, but black women are more likely to die of the disease because their cancers are found at a more advanced stage.
- Hormone therapy
- Birth control pills
- Excessive use of alcohol
What should I do to prepare?
When preparing for the exam, please do not wear deodorant or talcum powder on the day of the exam. When arriving for your appointment, it is very important to have any previous mammogram films with you for our physicians to compare to current films.
Individual images will be taken of the breasts using moderate compression. The more the breast is compressed, the better detail of the breast tissue. Also, it decreases the amount of radiation received, due to the fact that the thinner the breast, the less radiation needed to penetrate the breast. Additional views, as well as breast sonography, may also be warranted to further study the breast tissue.
How long does the visit take?
The visit itself takes approximately 30-45 minutes including check-in procedures.
When will I get my results?
The films are interpreted by a board-certified radiologist and the results are sent to your referring physician. You will also receive a letter regarding these results.