At Lakeview Hospital, we aim to take better care of you. That’s why we enhanced our already comprehensive line of services for women with the most advanced breast imaging technology available today - digital mammography.
Digital mammography is simply a better choice. It provides superior diagnostic images while significantly decreasing exposure to radiation. It reduces exam times from 60 minutes to 30. And, although the breast still has to be compressed, it causes less pinching and discomfort.
Digital mammography is also an invaluable cancer screening tool – especially for women under the age of 50 and those who have dense breasts at any age. Multiple studies have shown that when breast cancer is detected and treated early, the survival rate increases dramatically.
What is a mammogram?
A mammogram is an x-ray examination of the breast and is used to detect and diagnose breast disease in women. It can be used to detect breast problems such as a lump, pain, or nipple discharge, as well as for women who have no breast complaints.
What does a mammogram show?
- Calcifications, which are tiny mineral deposits within the breast tissue. There are two categories of calcifications:
- macrocalcifications- coarse calcium deposits that usually indicate degenerative changes in the breasts, such as aging of the breast arteries, old injury, and inflammation.
- microcalcifications- tiny (less than 1/50 of an inch) specks of calcium. When many microcalcifications are seen in one area, they are referred to as a cluster.
- Masses, which may occur with or without associated calcifications, and may be due to different causes, including:
- cyst- a non-cancerous collection of fluid in the breast. It cannot be diagnosed by physical exam alone or by mammography alone. Either breast ultrasound or aspiration with a needle is required. If a mass is not a cyst, then further imaging may be obtained.
- benign breast conditions - masses can be monitored with periodic mammography, but others may require immediate or delayed biopsy.
- breast cancer
Who should get a mammogram?
Women between age 40 and 50 should receive a yearly screening. After the age of 50, mammograms are recommended every two years. If you have questions, talk to your doctor about when to start getting mammograms and how often.
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