Breast cancer remains a concern for women over the age of 40. If anyone in your immediate family has the disease, you might be a greater risk. It is important to go for regular screenings. While checking your breasts at home for lumps, changes in nipple shape, size, and skin issues is a good start; your doctor may recommend getting a mammogram. Simply put, a mammogram is an X-ray of your breasts, which allows the doctor to detect and diagnose breast cancer, especially when you have no symptoms. Before you step in for idaho mammography screening, here are five facts you need to know.
- You will not feel any pain. While a mammogram does expose the patient to a low level of radiation, it is an excellent diagnostic tool. The benefits of mammograms outweigh the risks, and you will not feel any pain during the process. Your breasts will be compressed against the X-ray machine, which may cause some discomfort, but the whole process can be completed in just about 20 minutes.
- Your doctor may recommend a 3D mammogram. If your traditional mammogram detected something unusual, you might have to go for a 3D mammogram, which takes three-dimensional images of the breasts. The process is almost the same, with no pain.
- You don’t have to prepare for your mammogram. While it is best that you schedule your mammogram at a time when your breasts are not tender (usually in your periods), you don’t have to take additional steps at home. You don’t need to fast and can continue to take your food and other medications as usual.
- Your doctor will suggest the next mammogram. While some women may need annual screenings, most women over 40 can consider getting a screening once in two years. Talk to your doctor about the need for breast cancer screening, especially if you are a risk.
- You may need additional tests. Just a traditional mammogram is not always enough to detect breast cancer. If the radiologist sees anything unusual in the images, your doctor will usually recommend more tests to determine whether you have breast cancer. An ultrasound test or a biopsy may be necessary in some cases.
You should wear something comfortable before the mammogram. You will have to change before the process, and wearing something easy to take off is a good idea. Avoid using makeup, skincare products, or deodorants before the mammogram.