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Everything You Should Know Before Going for a Mammogram


Early detection is the most crucial part of preventing breast cancer, one of the most common forms of cancer in women. In fact, about 12% of women will develop breast cancer over the course of their lifetime — most of which can be caught early on through routine mammograms. Here is everything you should know about 3D mammography tomosynthesis in order to make the procedure go more smoothly.

What is a mammogram?

Digital mammography machine

A mammogram is a form of radiology imaging that is used to find changes in breast tissue. Conventional digital imaging typically gives the doctor one look at the overlapping breast tissue, but 3D mammography tomosynthesis takes pictures of the breast from all different angels providing a clear, accurate view of the problem area. This method is used mainly for pinpointing abnormalities in the breast that a conventional scanner could not.

Where do I go for a mammogram?

It is important to find a clinic that specializes in mammograms as they meet FDA standards of health and safety. There are many radiology centers in NJ focusing on breast health for you to choose from.

When should I get a mammogram?

Depending on the rate of breast cancer within your family, experts recommend going for your first mammogram once you reach the age of 40. It is also important to go about a week after your menstrual period as your breasts will not be tender and painful. You may not be allowed to go if you are pregnant, as MRI radiology is frowned upon during the first three trimesters. If you have any questions, ask your doctor.

Last week, I experienced my first 3D Mammogram. I had no idea how much clearer the images are with the 3D. The doctor compared a few years of my reports and it was plain to see how the regular mammogram missed a few small scars and the 3D picked them up clearly. I suggest any woman who is due for your mammogram, to please consider the 3D mammogram.

– Patient testimonial by: Doretha Burrell / 9 Year Breast Cancer Survivor

What to wear during a mammogram?

Arrive at your appointment wearing a two-piece outfit, as you will have to remove your shirt for the exam. Do not apply any deodorants, powder, ointment, or lotions the day of the procedure, because they can come across as white spots on the x-ray.

What to expect during a mammogram?

The entire procedure takes between 15 to 20 minutes, and the machine will flatten your breasts one at a time in between two plastic plates. You will need to lie still as the machine takes a series of pictures. It may be uncomfortable at first, but the sensation will quickly go away. 

Breast cancer is 100% preventable, and it starts with you. If you are of age, contact your nearest breast health clinic or diagnostic imaging center to schedule your appointment right away.

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Radiology Affiliates Imaging offers highly specialized experience in every facet of radiology, utilizing current and progressive protocols with the most innovative techniques for diagnostic imaging and therapeutic intervention.