Mammography has clearly shown to decrease the mortality associated with breast cancer. By having yearly screening mammograms, it has been shown that breast cancer can be detected at an earlier stage and is much more curable. Current American Cancer Society guidelines recommend a baseline mammogram by age 40 and screening mammograms each year thereafter.
Radiology Associates Imaging Centers offer Digital Mammography which is sophisticated, leading edge technology for both screening and diagnostic mammograms. A screening mammogram is for women who have no current problems. A diagnostic mammogram is designed for women who may have a potential problem and symptoms such as a palpable lump, new pain in the breast, nipple discharge, or who have been told an abnormality was noted on their recent screening mammogram. Diagnostic mammograms may also be accompanied by ultrasound, which is done at the same appointment as well.
Preparing for Your Exam
Do not use powders, deodorant, or perfume on the day of your mammogram. These products contain substances that show up on the x-ray film and can cause an unsatisfactory exam. Also, it is very important to bring your most recent mammogram if that was done at another facility.
The recent controversial recommendations regarding mammograms provided by the United States Preventative Task Force has confused many women in our commmunity on whether or not to have their yearly mammograms and self-breast examinations.
Radiology Associates believes women should continue to follow the current recommendations for breast health. Mammograms and self-breast exams save lives. Here is what the experts say:
American Cancer Society
"The American Cancer Society continues to recommend annual screening using mammography and clinical breast examination for all women beginning at age 40. Our experts make this recommendation having reviewed virtually all the same data reviewed by the USPSTF, but also additional data that the USPSTF did not consider. When recommendations are based on judgments about the balance of risks and benefits, reasonable experts can look at the same data and reach different conclusions."
For more information please visit www.cancer.org.
Susan G. Komen
"We encourage women to be aware of their breast health, understand their risks, and continue to follow existing recommendations for routine screenings incuding mammography beginning at age 40."
For more information, please visit www.komentidewater.org.
American College of Radiology
"The American College of Radiology (ACR) is pleased to see that Secretary Sebelius has reaffirmed that mammography is a vital and lifesaving tool in the battle against breast cancer. We strongly urge women and providers to continue to adhere to the curent American Cancer Society and American College of Radiology policies regarding mammographic screening."
For more information please visit www.acr.org.
Health and Human Services Secretary - Katherine Sebelius
"My message to women is simple. Mammograms have always been an important lifesaving tool in the fight against breast cancer and they still are today. Keep doing what you have been doing for years - talk to your doctor about your individual history, ask questions and make the decision that is right for you."
For more information please visit www.foxnews.com.
Have questions? Radiology Associates will be offering free seminars at its imaging centers discussing mammography guidelines and how mammograms can save lives. Seminar times and topics will be posted regularly, so check back soon.