Mammography is a specialized medical imaging technique that uses a low-dose X-ray system to examine the breasts for abnormalities or growths indicative of cancer and other problems.
Since it was first recommended by the American Cancer Society (ACS) in 1976, mammography has become the gold standard for breast cancer detection and an essential tool for the significant reduction of breast cancer-related deaths. With its remarkable sensitivity rate of up to 88 percent and good specificity rate of up to 75 percent, mammography greatly enhances a physician’s ability to diagnose small but malignant breast tumors and calcifications and mitigate them while they’re still highly treatable.
If you’re due for your first mammogram (mammography exam) soon, here are things you need to know before your appointment—particularly how you can prepare for it.
Preparing for Your Mammogram Appointment
While a mammogram is a fairly straightforward procedure, it still helps to adequately prepare for it to help ensure you get accurate results and make your experience as worry-free and comfortable as possible. Below are simple tips for preparing for your mammogram:
- Schedule your mammogram appointment one to two weeks after your period, when your breasts are not tender or engorged.
- Avoid caffeine consumption a few days prior to your scheduled mammogram appointment, as caffeine can cause your breast ducts to swell up and your breasts to get tender.
- Remove any piece of jewelry before your exam. Also, avoid applying deodorant or anything that may contain aluminum particles, as these can leave white traces and make it difficult for the radiologist to distinguish from breast calcifications, which could be an early symptom of breast cancer.
- Wear a two-piece item of clothing, as you will have to take off your top and bra. Nonetheless, it will only be you and the technician in the room during the test, and you will be provided with a smock to wear for the exam.
- Getting a mammogram is one of the smartest things you can do for your breast health and overall well-being. While doctors may sometimes require follow-up imaging after mammograms because of calcifications or other irregularities, the majority of women who have been advised to get additional testing do not get a cancer diagnosis.
Mammography Facility in Sarasota and Bradenton, FL
If you’re looking for a trusted mammography facility in Sarasota or Bradenton, Florida, visit us here at Intercoastal Medical Group. We offer 3D digital mammograms which, studies show, expose patients to less radiation compared to traditional mammograms. This innovative technology also yields exceptional image quality, allowing for the detection of smaller growths and reducing the likelihood of false-positive results.
Our mammogram procedures are performed by licensed, highly knowledgeable, and compassionate imaging technologists who will make sure your appointment is as comfortable and efficient as possible. With our expertise, we can tailor our screening approach to your specific needs.
To schedule a mammogram appointment, call us at our office near you, or simply use our appointment request form. Our digital mammography services are available at these locations: Cattleridge Imaging (941) 365-1102, and Lakewood Ranch I Imaging (941) 365-1102.