About Diagnostic Mammogram

A mammogram is an x-ray image of the breast.  Screening mammograms are used to check for breast cancer in women who have no signs or symptoms of the disease. Diagnostic mammograms are used when additional images of the breast are needed after the standard screening examine has been performed to further check for cancer where the patient or physician feels a lump or thickening of the breast tissue.  In a diagnostic mammogram procedure, x-rays are taken of the breast from different angles, magnification views or compression of a small area of the breast to maximize detail.  Getting a diagnostic mammogram and doing self breast exams on a regular basis are the most effective ways to detect breast cancer early.

What to Expect from a Diagnostic Mammogram Procedure

In a typical diagnostic mammogram procedure, the patient stands in front of an X-ray machine that is specifically designed for mammography.  It is important that the X-ray machine gets an unobstructed view of your breasts.  Your breasts are placed on a platform and gradually pressed against by a clear plastic plate.  Pressure is then applied for a few seconds so that the breast tissue is able to spread out.  After the images are made of both your breasts you will have to wait while the technician checks the quality of the images.  If needed you may have to repeat the test.  Typically the test lasts less than 30 minutes.

How Will I Learn the Results of my Diagnostic Mammogram Procedure?

The radiologist or technologist will discuss the results of the diagnostic mammogram procedure with the patient at the conclusion of the exam.  The radiologist will discuss findings, options and recommendations, and answer your question.  Depending on the patient's results of the diagnostic mammogram, the radiologist monitoring your study may conduct additional studies.

Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an appointment, please call 888.364.6400.

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