Mammography is the process of using low-dose amplitude x-rays to examine the human breast and is used as a diagnostic as well as a screening tool.
Mammography is an important tool in the early detection of breast cancer, typically through detection of characteristic masses and/or microcalcifications. No other imaging technique has been shown to reduce risk of breast cancer.
It is best to wear a two piece outfit (skirt/pants and a top) as you will need to remove your top. Talcum powder and deodorant are NOT to be worn as this may show up on the images. If you are about to have a period you should arrange to have your mammogram after your period finishes. Bring all previous mammograms you have had at other practices.
The radiographer will carefully place each breast in turn between two plastic plates on the x-ray machine. Compression will be applied to each breast to get a uniform thickness throughout, which is important to give a good image of the breast. The breasts are held for a few seconds while pictures are taken.
Compression can be uncomfortable and some patients find it painful, especially if the breast is already sensitive or tender at the time of the examination. Mammograms do not harm the breasts.
About 20 minutes