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Mammography

What is Mammography?

  • Mammography is a specific type of imaging that uses a low-dose x-ray system to examine breasts. A mammography exam, called a mammogram, is used to Aid in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women.
  • Three recent advances in mammography include digital mammography, computer-aided detection and breast tomosynthesis.
    • Digital mammography, also called full-field digital mammography (FFDM), is a mammography system in which the x-ray film is replaced by solid-state Detectors that convert x-rays into electrical signals. These detectors are similar to those found in digital cameras. The electrical signals are used to produce Images of the breast that can be seen on a computer screen or printed on special film similar to conventional mammograms
  • Computer-aided detection (CAD) systems use a digitized mammographic image that can be obtained from either a conventional film mammogram or a Digitally acquired mammogram. The computer software then searches for abnormal areas of density, mass, or calcification that may indicate the presence of Cancer. The CAD system highlights these areas on the images, alerting the radiologist to the need for further analysis.
  • Breast tomosynthesis, also called three-dimensional (3-D) breast imaging, is a mammography system where the x-ray tube and imaging plate move during the Exposure. It creates a series of thin slices through the breast that allow for improved detection of cancer and fewer patients recalled for additional imaging.

Why should I do it?

  • Mammograms are used as a screening tool to detect early breast cancer in women experiencing no symptoms. It can also be used to detect and

Breast Imaging
Diagnose breast disease in women experiencing symptoms such as a lump, pain or nipple discharge.

Any preparations needed?

  • Do not schedule your mammogram for the week before your period if your breasts are usually tender during this time. The best time for a mammogram is one Week following your period.
  • Always inform your doctor or x-ray technologist if there is any possibility that you are pregnant.
  • Do not wear deodorant, talcum powder or lotion under your arms or on your breasts on the day of the exam.
  • Describe any breast symptoms or problems to the technologist performing the exam.
  • If possible, obtain prior mammograms and make them available to the radiologist at the time of the current exam.