Before and after the Mammogram
The body, especially the breast, goes through natural cycles, but being able to detect any abnormalities early will help increase your chances of overcoming any serious health risks.
Mammograms play a crucial role in the detection of abnormalities in the breast and The American Cancer Screening guidelines recommend women between the ages of 40 to 44 should have the choice to start annual breast cancer screening with mammograms. Women, aged 45 to 54, should get mammograms every year, thereafter, women 55 and older should switch to mammograms every 2 years, or can continue their annual screening routine.
Before the Mammogram:
If you have been referred by your physician or would like to go for your routine check-up, you can book an appointment at any of our branches.
- It is advised not to schedule your mammogram for the week before your menstrual cycle if your breasts are usually tender during this time.
The best time to book an appointment is normally one week following your monthly cycle.
- Always inform your doctor or radiographer if there is any possibility that you might be pregnant.
Do not wear deodorant, talcum powder or lotion under your arms on the day of the exam as these can appear on the x-ray film as white spots mimicking pathology.
- Before your mammogram, your mammographer will explain the procedure to you and complete a quick questionnaire with you to provide clinical history for the radiologist.
- The mammogram is mostly pain-free depending on the machine and the density of your breast.
Very important: Remember to make your previous mammogram images available to the radiologist at the time of the current examination.
How is a mammogram performed:
During a mammogram, the radiographer will position you and image the breast. The breast is first placed on a special cassette and compressed with a paddle (made of clear Plexiglass or other soft plastic).
You will be asked to change positions slightly between images, and then the process will be repeated for the other breast.
After the mammogram:
Digital images and reports are available to your referring doctor as soon as the radiologists have viewed the examination and reported on the findings. The radiologist, on occasion, may discuss preliminary results with you at the time of scanning, if necessary and appropriate.