What to Expect from Your First Mammogram - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

6/17/02

What to Expect from Your First Mammogram

  • It is a test every woman should have starting at age 40 unless there is a family history of breast cancer, then your doctor may suggest mammograms earlier. If a mammogram is new for you, Brigham and Women's Hospital has prepared these tips on what to expect.
  • Do not wear deodorant or anti-perspirant the day of the procedure or the technician should ask you to take it off. "Because some deodorants contain metallic particles that can be confusing and look like calcifications," says Dr. Daryl Smith of Brigham's and Women's Hospital.
  • Also it's best to get your mammogram at the same place every time, so radiologists can compare your mammograms from year to year.
  • During the procedure, when your breast is compressed under glass, it's imporptant to stay as still as possible because any movement, even slight, can blur the picture.
  • For your benefit, try not to schedule a mammogram right before your period because that's when your breasts are going to be more tender.

By the way, you will be asked to remove all of your jewelry before the test, so you might prefer to just leave those items at home. Dr. Smith says remember that mammography is the best we have right now in finding cancer early and that it is safe because the type of x-ray used is extremely low energy.

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