Digital Mammography

Who should have a mammogram?

The American Cancer Society and American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend that all women have a baseline screening mammogram between the ages of 35 and 40 and that beginning at the age of 40, women have an annual screening mammogram. Mammograms play a central part in the early detection of breast cancer because they can detect changes in the breast that may be early signs of cancer, but are too small or subtle to be felt.

What is a mammogram?

A mammogram is an x-ray examination of the breasts, used to detect and diagnose breast diseases. Screening mammography is used as a preventive measure for women who have no symptoms of breast disease and usually involves two views of each breast. A diagnostic mammography involves additional views of the breast, and is used when an abnormality is found during a screening, or in women who have breast complaints, such as a breast mass, nipple discharge, breast pain, or skin irritation.

The benefits of digital mammography

With digital mammography, the radiologist reviews electronic images of the breast, using high-resolution monitors. The physician can adjust the brightness, change contrast, and zoom in for close ups of specific areas of interest. Being able to manipulate images is one of the main benefits of digital technology. Another convenience is of digital mammography over film-based systems is it can greatly reduce the needs for retakes due to over or under exposure. This potentially saves additional time and reduces your exposure to x-rays. Digital mammograms produce images that appear on the technologist's monitor in a matter of seconds. There is no waiting time for film to develop, which can mean a shorter time spent in the breast imaging suite.

Early diagnosis is key

There is no disagreement that early and accurate diagnosis of breast cancer is key to improving clinical outcomes. Mammography - and in particular, digital mammography - is now widely regarded as the gold standard for detecting early breast cancer disease. In most cases, mammography can identify an abnormal breast mass as much as two years before a physical change would be noticed.

What you need to know

Here is a list of things everyone woman should know about mammograms.

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Atrium OBGYN, Inc.
4151 Holiday Street NW
Canton, Ohio 44718

Phone: 330.492.8001
Fax: 330.492.2080

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