End the Confusion: Mammograms
Below are common questions we receive from patients about mammograms, along with recommendations from the American College of Radiology and our radiologists on the best practices for screening mammography.
Q: When should I schedule my first mammogram?
A: Most women should schedule their first mammogram by age 40. The most lives are saved when women begin annual screening mammography by age 40. If you are at higher risk of developing breast cancer due to family history or other risk factors, you may need to begin getting mammograms earlier.
Q: How often should I have a screening mammogram?
A: You should have a mammogram every year. This is the best way to find small changes and is proven to catch cancers earlier when they are most treatable.
Q: What is 3D mammography (tomosynthesis) and how does it work?
A: Digital breast tomosynthesis, or 3D mammography, is a revolutionary breast imaging tool that improves the detection of breast cancer. Multiple images are taken from various angles to create a three-dimensional picture of the breast. A radiologist is able to review your breast, one thin slice at a time, almost like turning the pages in a book, which allows them to make a more accurate diagnosis.
Q: Why should I choose 3D mammography?
A: 3D mammography is shown to improve detection of invasive breast cancers by 41%. It also helps to decrease the number of times additional mammography images are necessary. At the Genesis Imaging Centers, 3D mammography is the standard of care that is provided to all of our patients.
Q: Do I need any other screening exams to test for breast cancer?
A: This is an important discussion to have with your doctor. All women should receive a screening mammogram every year. However, if you are considered to be at high risk for breast cancer, you may qualify for additional testing such as a breast MRI.
Q: How do I schedule my mammogram?
A: That’s easy! Call 563-421-XRAY (9729) or 309-281-5000 to schedule your mammogram with one of our knowledgeable radiology schedulers.
No doctor’s order is necessary!