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What is Mammography or a Mammogram?


A Mammogram is a diagnostic tool that uses x-rays to exam the breasts.  Sometimes a small tumor cannot be felt by touch. A mammogram can find possible cancer at an early stage when it is small and easy to treat. 

Following the American Cancer Society and the American College of Radiology guidelines, starting at age 40, all women should get a mammogram every year. If you have a family history, you may want to ask your doctor if you should start getting a mammogram earlier. 

What should you expect during a mammogram? 

• First, schedule your appointment at a convenient time. Remember to bring your script from your doctor and your insurance card. 

• The day of your exam, wash the breasts and underarms with plain soap and water. Your skin should be clean and free of any deodorant, perfume, powder or ointments. 

• During your mammogram, your breasts will be compressed between 2 metal plates. At Diagnostic Imaging Associates, we use a mammopad, which is a soft, cushiony pad, which is placed on the plate, to make the experience warmer and more comfortable. This pad does not interfere with the pictures in any way.  The plates flatten the breast tissue so that a good picture can be taken of the breasts. This will not harm your breasts. It may be a little uncomfortable, but the test is pretty quick. If it is too painful, please let the technologist know. 

• In most cases, you will get your results that day. In some case, additional pictures may be required by the radiologist. This is in your best interest. If your mammogram shows something, we will discuss with you what the next steps will be. 

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call Diagnostic Imaging Associates at (716) 636-1902.   

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