What is Mammography
Mammography is a specific type of Radiology that uses x-rays to produce images of the breast tissue. Mammograms are acquired using dedicated imaging systems that take both 2D and 3D images of the breast from various angles. Mammography is an important tool in early detection and monitoring of breast cancer.
Why Do I Need a Mammogram?
Mammograms are generally requested for two specific purposes; Screening and Diagnosis.
Screening Mammograms are performed on patients with no symptoms related to breast cancer at regular intervals in order to detect any early cancerous changes. Screening Mammograms are vital for the early detection and management of cancerous changes in the breast tissue.
Diagnostic Mammograms are specifically requested by your Doctor if your begin experience symptoms that can be associated with breast cancer.
Booking Your Appointment and Preparation
You may be asked to not apply any talcum powder or deodorant on the day of the examination. UCMI takes this precaution as these products may contain substances that can alter the appearance of the mammogram and sometimes even mimic pathology.
We will also ask you to bring any previous mammograms or breast imaging with you to your appointment. As Mammography requires the observation of very small changes in the density of your breast tissue, comparing your examination to your previous is vitally important.
On the day of your appointment no further specific preparation is required.
What To Expect On The Day
Upon arrival at the clinic you will be asked to provide us with a detail medical history of any breast related symptoms or previous diseases. Additionally we will ask you about any family history of breast cancer. These medical factors help us establish your risk factors for breast cancer and other disease.
Before your procedure you will be asked to change into a hospital gown. A female Radiographer will take you into the Procedure room to complete your Mammogram.
In order to acquire diagnostic images of your breast tissues, the images will need to be acquired under compression. Compression is essential in breast mammography, it allows us to acquire the clearest image of your breast tissue while minimising radiation dose. During compression of your breast, you may experience some temporary discomfort. In a normal Mammogram, compression is usually applied for only a few seconds at a time. Additionally UCMI deploys Mammography machines that are designed to minimise discomfort during the compression.
After the acquisition of the routine imaging you will be asked to remain in the Mammography Room while the Radiologist reviews your imaging. This will ensure that all necessary imaging is acquired to make a diagnosis of your breast tissue.