Mammography is a type of imaging using low-dose x-ray to capture images of internal structures of the breasts. In a full field digital mammography, information take from the conventional x-ray are converted by a scanner to a digital picture that is sent to a monitor or printer. Computer-aided detection (CAD) systems use the digitalized mammographic images and search for abnormal areas of density, mass, or calcification that may indicate presence of cancer. The CAD system highlights these areas on the images, alerting radiologists to analyze further.
Before a mammogram, disclose any changes to your breasts that you or your physician has noticed. Technicians may ask medical information such as family history of breast cancer, prior surgeries or implants, or hormone use. You may be asked to refrain from use of any powder, perfume, or deodorant around the breast areas and axilla. Scheduling your mammogram a week after your period may be recommended. For optimal comfort, refrain from scheduling your mammogram a week before your period if your breasts tend to be tender during this time.
** It is important to inform physicians and x-ray technicians if a woman believe she is or may be pregnant. It is recommended that monthly self-breast exams and follow-up with physicians are continued. Please consult with your physician and/or radiologist for detailed instructions or any concerns regarding on how to prepare for your mammography.
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