Screening Mammography — A mammogram is a low-dose X-ray of the breast. To date, this is the best test to screen for breast cancer. A screening mammogram consists of two “pictures” of each of a woman’s breast. Annual screening mammography is recommended for all women over 40 years old.

Diagnostic mammograms – This is a mammogram used to evaluate women who have a breast mass, found during a breast self-exam or by their physician, or who have other symptoms of a breast abnormality. Different than a screening mammogram, a diagnostic mammogram is tailored to the patient’s case and is carefully monitored by a radiologist, who determines whether there is any need for further tests.

If an abnormality is found on mammogram, supplemental mammographic views and possibly ultrasound is then typically ordered for further characterization. A variety of mammographic techniques, including spot compression and magnification views and varied angled views, may characterize a lesion more precisely prior to making a final recommendation for management.


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