Seven things to know about getting a Mammogram

Seven things to know about getting a Mammogram:

Mammograms (breast x-rays) are the best screening tool we have to find breast cancer early, when it may be easier to treat. After you and your health care professional establish a screening schedule, it’ll help to know what to expect so it can go as smoothly as possible. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. What is a Mammogram?

A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast that’s used to find breast changes. X-rays were first used to examine breast tissue nearly a century ago. Today, the x-ray machines used fro mammograms produce lower energy x-rays and expose the breast to much less radiation compared with those in the past.

2. Where to get it:

Find a center that specializes in mammograms. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) certifies mammogram facilities that meet high professional standards of quality and safety. Ask to see the FDA certification if one isn’t posted near the receptionist’s desk. And when you find a facility you like, stick to it. Having all your mammograms at the same facility will make it easier for doctors to compare images from one year to the next. If you’ve had mammograms done at other facilities, have those images sent to your new facility.

3. When to schedule it:

It’s best to schedule your mammogram about a week after your menstrual period. Your breasts won’t be as tender or swollen, which¬† means less discomfort during the x-ray.

4. What and what not to wear:

Wear a 2-piece outfit because you will need to remove your top and bra. Do not apply deodorant, antiperspirant, powder, lotions or ointment on or around your chest on the day of your mammogram. These products can appear as white spots on the x-ray.

5. What to expect:

The entire procedure takes about 20 minutes. The breast is compressed between two plastic plates for a few seconds while an x-ray is taken. It’s repositioned (and compressed again) to take another view. This is then done on the other breast. Flattening the breast can be uncomfortable but is needed to provide a clearer view.

6. Getting the Results:

You should get your results within 10 days. If you don’t, you should call to ask about them. If doctors find something suspicious, you’ll likely be contacted within a week to take new pictures or get other tests. But that doesn’t mean you have cancer. A suspicious finding may be just dense breast tissue or a cyst. Other times, the image just isn’t clear and needs to be retaken. If this is your first mammogram, your doctor may want to look at an area more closely simply because there is no previous mammogram for comparison.

7. What you pay:

For uninsured or low income women, free or low cost mammogram services are available. Some of these programs are held during National Breast Cancer Month in October, while others are offered year round. Call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345 to find a program near you.

Visit cancer.org/FightBreastCancer for more breast cancer information and support.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the American Cancer Society pamphlet on mammograms and I give them full credit for the information. Please call 1-800-227-2345 or check cancer.org for information.

About jwatrel

I am a free-lance writer and Blogger. I am the author of the book "Firehouse 101" (IUniverse.com 2005) part of trilogy of books centered in New York City. My next book "Love Triangles" is finished being edited and should be ready for release in the Fall. My latest book, "Dinner at Midnight", a thriller is on its last chapter. My long awaited book explains the loss of the 2004 Yankee game to Boston. I work as a Consultant, Adjunct College Professor, Volunteer Fireman and Ambulance member and Blogger. I have a blog site for caregivers called 'bergencountycaregiver', a step by step survival guide to all you wonderful folks taking care of your loved ones, a walking project to walk every block, both sides, of the island of Manhattan "MywalkinManhattan" and discuss what I see and find on the streets of New York and three sites to accompany it. One is an arts site called "Visiting a Museum", where I showcase small museums, historical sites and parks that are off the beaten track both in Manhattan and outside the city to cross reference with "MywalkinManhattan" blog site. Another is "DiningonaShoeStringNYC", featuring small restaurants I have found on my travels in this project, that offer wonderful meals for $10.00 and under. So be on the lookout for updates on all three sites and enjoy 'MywalkinManhattan'. The third is my latest site, "LittleShoponMainStreet", which showcases all the unique and independent shops that I have found on my travels throughout and around Manhattan. I have started two new blog sites for the fire department, one "EngineOneHasbrouck HeightsFireDepartmentnj" for the Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department to discuss what our Engine Company is doing and the other is "BergenCountyFireman'sHomeAssociation" for the Bergen County Fireman's Association, which fire fighters from Bergen County, NJ, go to the Fireman's Home in Boonton, NJ to bring entertainment and cheer to our fellow brother fire fighters quarterly.
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1 Response to Seven things to know about getting a Mammogram

  1. jwatrel says:

    Please call the above numbers for more information.

    Liked by 1 person

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