Breast imaging scans show the makeup of tissues and structures inside the breast. Mammograms, breast MRIs, and ultrasounds are all used to view inside the breast and to help diagnose a range of conditions, including breast cancer.
Breast imaging is vital for diagnosing breast cancer early before it spreads to other parts of the body.
Mammograms are the most commonly taken breast imaging scans.
Screening mammograms use X-rays to take pictures of the breast to reveal tumors or abnormalities that cannot be observed on the surface. Diagnostic mammograms discover information about a lump or another possible sign of breast cancer observed during a screening mammogram.
Mammogram machines take X-ray images of the breast using lower doses of radiation than standard X-rays. The device uses two metal plates to compress the breast to generate clear images of the tissue throughout the whole breast.
The mammogram scan should only take around 10-15 minutes to complete.
Experts at the American College of Radiology (ACR) and Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) recommend that women receive an annual mammogram starting at age 40.
If you have a family history of certain cancers or abnormal breast tissue, your physician will likely recommend starting mammography screening before age 40.
Ultrasound imaging uses sound waves to reveal internal structures of the breast. Ultrasounds emit no radiation and are a safe way to examine the breast when a mammogram is not required or after a mammogram has been completed.
Breast ultrasounds may be conducted to determine the source of the problem when abnormal breast tissue or discharge occurs.
Ultrasound can also be used to guide a biopsy procedure to remove cells from the breast tissue for testing. Ultrasound biopsies are less invasive than surgical biopsies and can be performed on an outpatient basis by a radiologist.
Schedule an appointment today to discuss your breast imaging options with the team at Cambria Somerset Radiology.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!