What is a Mammogram?

Mammography is a special type of x-ray imaging used to create detailed images of the breast. Mammography uses low dose x-ray; high contrast, high-resolution film; and an x-ray system designed specifically for imaging the breasts. Successful treatment of breast cancer depends on early diagnosis. Mammography plays a major role in early detection of breast cancers. The benefits of mammography far outweigh the risks and inconvenience.

Benefits of Mammography

Mammography can show changes in the breast well before a woman or her physician can feel them. Once a lump is discovered, mammography can be key in evaluating the lump to determine if it is cancerous. If a breast abnormality is found or confirmed with mammography, additional breast imaging tests such as ultrasound (sonography) or a breast biopsy may be performed. A biopsy involves taking a sample(s) of breast tissue and examining it under a microscope to determine whether it contains cancer cells. Many times, mammography or ultrasound is used to help the radiologist or surgeon guide the needle to the correct area in the breast during biopsy.