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Doctor insights on: Digital Screening Mammogram

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Dr. Barry Rosen
663 Doctors shared insights

Mammogram (Definition)

A mammogram is the "gold standard" screening test for breast cancer. It's well established that yearly 'grams will DX cancers well before they are palpable, leading to earlier diagnoses and saved lives. All experts agree to begin yearly mammograms by age 50; many (including myself) believe the pro's outweigh the con's to begin at 40. Regrettably, less than half of all women ...Read more


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What do they do if my screening mammogram shows a problem?

What do they do if my screening mammogram shows a problem?

More tests: You can expect more mammogram images, possibly a breast ultrasound. A breast mri, other studies, and biopsy may also be required. ...Read more

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How does a diagnostic mammogram differ from a screening mammogram?

How does a diagnostic mammogram differ from a screening mammogram?

Screening mammo: Is 4 standard views in an asymptomatic woman, looking for signs of cancer anywhere in both breasts. Diagnostic mammogram is a variable number of specialized views to fully evaluate a particular area of the breast identified as potentially abnormal on screening mammo or physical exam. ...Read more

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What is the difference between a diagnostic vs screening mammogram?

What is the difference between a diagnostic vs screening mammogram?

Symptoms: A screening mammography is done as a routine exam. There are no symptoms. No masses have been felt. The patient is being screened.
A diagnostic mammo is done because there is some reason other than routine. A mass has been felt, there is a discharge from the nipple, etc. Additional views may be taken. Sometimes a needle aspiration will be done at the same time. ...Read more

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What is the. Difference bet a diagnostic mammogram? And a screening mammogram? Thanks..

What is the. Difference bet a diagnostic mammogram? And a screening mammogram? Thanks..

A screening: mammogram is an evaluation of both breasts that is performed on asymptomatic women to try and detect signs of breast cancer. A diagnostic mammogram consists of special views, and is usually targeted to a specific area of the breast, to further evaluate a potential abnormality seen on screening mammo or felt on clinical exam. ...Read more

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What if my screening mammogram shows a problem? Are there any problems with mammograms?

What if my screening mammogram shows a problem? Are there any problems with mammograms?

No perfect test: It is possible that what is picked-up on a mammogram is not cancer. Unfortunately, there is overlap between the benign and malignant. This is why additional tests (such as ultrasound) are necessary. ...Read more

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What are the dangers and limitations of mammograms and are there any alternative screening processes that you would recommend?

See below: Mammograms have not been associated with dangers. In conjunction with self-examination and health care examination, this is the best screen for breast cancer. Not all cancers are found on mammogram, and, if a lump is present and not seen on mammogram, additional evaluation will be necessary. ...Read more

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Confused by all the changes in recommendations for screening for women. What's the latest for mammograms?

Confused by all the changes in recommendations for screening for women. What's the latest for mammograms?

No change: The United States preventitiv task force back tracked and did not essentially change the recommendations. Every 2 years from 40-50, yearly after age 50. ...Read more

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I had a screening mammogram. I waited while the technician checked. She took 1 more pic but implied something not right. Why would she take one more?

I had a screening mammogram. I waited while the technician checked. She took 1 more pic but implied something not right. Why would she take one more?

Don't: Read too much into that. The technologists do not diagnose or work up abnormalities. When they take extra pictures on their own, it likely means that one of the pictures was technically inadequate, for example due to motion blurring or suboptimal positioning, and they are simply repeating it to get the best possible picture. ...Read more

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Some alternatives to mammograms for breast screening.

None: At present there are no definite good alternatives to mammograms for breast screening. Ultrasound and MRI are complimentary to mammograms but do not replace mammograms. Specifically microcalcifications are best seen on mammograms which have resolution of up to 70 microns. There are some advertised screening alternatives but none are as tried and true as mammograms. ...Read more

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What are some some alternatives to mammograms for breast screening.?

What are some some alternatives to mammograms for breast screening.?

Mammography: Is the standard of care. Screening MRI may be indicated in certain high risk patients. Screening ultrasound may be useful, but has not been validated by clinical studies at this point. ...Read more

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How do I know whether I should get a screening MRI rather than a screening mammogram?

How do I know whether I should get a screening MRI rather than a screening mammogram?

High risk individual: Current guidelines recommend the following patients get screening MRI in addition to screening mammogram.
1. Brca mutation
2. First-degree relative of a brca carrier
3. Lifetime risk of breast cancer is 20-25% or greater
4. Radiation to chest between age 10-30
5. Li-fraumeni syndrome, or a first-deg relative
6. Cowden syndrome, or a first-deg relative
7. Bannayan-riley-ruvalcaba syndrome. ...Read more

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What is the difference between a screening mammogram, a diagnostic mammogram, and an ultrasound?

What is the difference between a screening mammogram, a diagnostic mammogram, and an ultrasound?

A screening: mammogram is a study of both breasts that is performed on asymptomatic women to try and detect signs of breast cancer. A diagnostic mammogram consists of special views, and is usually targeted to a specific area of the breast, to further evaluate a potential abnormality seen on screening mammo or felt on clinical exam. ...Read more

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What does it mean if a new focal asymmetry on screening mammogram "flattened into benign pattern" on diagnostic mammogram? I have very dense breasts.

What does it mean if a new focal asymmetry on screening mammogram "flattened into benign pattern" on diagnostic mammogram? I have very dense breasts.

No abnormality: It generally means that the original appearance on the screening mammogram was due to a coincidental overlapping of normal breast structures, causing the false appearance of a possible abnormality. On the diagnostic images, the overlapping structures spread out and look normal again, proving that the original "abnormality" was not real. A true mass would not flatten or spread out on the diag mammo ...Read more

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Are there alternatives to mammogram for breast cancer screening?

Are there alternatives to mammogram for breast cancer screening?

None as good: Mammograms are the best test for detecting breast cancer. It is not clear that breast exams by a health care provider add benefit (tho they may), and breast self exams have not been shown to be beneficial. Certainly, if you notice a bump, a change in skin, a nipple discharge or any abnormality that you are concerned about, you should get it checked out. ...Read more

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Should I start with a screening mammogram for a lump under my arm in rib area?

Should I start with a screening mammogram for a lump under my arm in rib area?

No - diagnostic: Wolf: whenever you are having a problem that could be related to the breasts you should ask for a "diagnostic" mammogram, not a screening. This means any extra imaging that might be needed can be done at the same visit and the radiologist will often talk with you about your results before you go. The sonogram is almost always done when you are feeling a lump as well as the mammogram. ...Read more

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Had a screening mammogram on Tuesday and the results show a 12 mill. Asymmetry at middle depth in right breast. Having diag. Mam. Next week Help! .

Had a screening mammogram on Tuesday and the results show a 12 mill. Asymmetry at middle depth in right breast. Having diag. Mam. Next week Help! .

Further tests indica: Further testing as planned is indicated. Also get your doctor to examine your breasts for any palpable lump. The presence of a definite lump requires a biopsy to find its nature (benign versus cancer). We also need to know your age? ...Read more

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I had a screening mammogram an it came back negative but report says heterogeneously dense breast, what does this mean and how accurate are the result?

I had a screening mammogram an it came back negative but report says heterogeneously dense breast, what does this mean and how accurate are the result?

Dense breasts: "Dense" breasts are normal, but decrease the sensitivity of the mammo for detecting cancers. Some studies show that the sensitivity of mammography in this setting can decrease to as low as 50%. Also, dense breasts are an independent risk factor for developing breast cancer, and cancers discovered in women with dense breasts tend to be more advanced. ...Read more

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What is the difference between screening mammogram and diagnostic mammogram? Why does the diagnostic one have to be done with breast ultrasound?

What is the difference between screening mammogram and diagnostic mammogram? Why does the diagnostic one have to be done with breast ultrasound?

Purpose: The purpose of a screening mammogram is to identify breast cancer in women who have no signs of disease, while the purpose of a diagnostic mammogram is to obtain more detail on a known abnormality identified on prior physical exam or imaging study. A diagnostic mammogram need not always be done with an ultrasound. ...Read more

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My screening mammogram turned out to be negative, but my doctor says I need a breast exam. Why?

My screening mammogram turned out to be negative, but my doctor says I need a breast exam. Why?

They are: Complementary examinations. Both are important in a comprehensive breast health evaluation. A small percentage of breast cancers are found on physical examination and not seen on mammography. ...Read more

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If a doctor put on a paper for test pain in both breast, fullness right moer than left what do that mean to me it's on for mammogram screening.

Not sure: If there are abnormalities on the physical exam, sounds like it should be a diagnostic mammo rather than a screening. ...Read more

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Doctors can you tell me when should young women start to have a screening of mammogram done for breast cancer?

Doctors can you tell me when should young women start to have a screening of mammogram done for breast cancer?

Mammograms: According to the American Cancer Society, American College of Radiology, and others, annual screening mammography should begin at age 40. Screening may begin sooner if you are a BRCA carrier or are otherwise at high risk. ...Read more

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How is the mammogram done to screen?

2 or 3 X-rays: A screening mammogram sqeezes each breast between 2 horizontal plates and then between 2 vertical plates in order to take the x-ray pictures. Sometimes a 3rd view is taken on a tilt. The tech helps you position your arm and the breast tissue to get the best picture. She will ask you to hold your breath while she clicks the picture. ...Read more

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Is there any proof that radiation from mammograms can cause breast cancer? Is there any legitimate alternative to screen for breast cancer?

Is there any proof that radiation from mammograms can cause breast cancer? Is there any legitimate alternative to screen for breast cancer?

MammogramsSAVELives: The radiation exposure of a digital mammogram is 3.7mgy. This is associated with a lifetime-attributable risk of breast cancer of 1.3 cases per 100, 000. Mammography is a safe, proven technique for finding cancers well before they are palpable and there is no controversy about its use after age 50. Thermograms are 25% as sensitive as mammograms and not suitable for screening. ...Read more

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When should I have a mammography screening?

When should I have a mammography screening?

Age 40: Most reputable medical institutions recommend beginning yearly screening at age 40 and continuing until no longer physically able. ...Read more

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After a mammagram screening and dignastic mamm it said a irregular focal asymmetric density found. What is the percentage of this being cancer.

After a mammagram screening and dignastic mamm it said a irregular focal asymmetric density found. What is the percentage of this being cancer.

The BIRADS code: At the end of the report will be an indication. If it is BIRADS 3 (probably benign), there is less than a 1% chance of malignancy, and these are usually followed at 6 months. If it is 4 (suspicious), there is a 20-30% chance. If it is 5 (highly suspicious), there is at least a 75 % chance. ...Read more

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Why is mammography not recommended as screening tool for women in 30s to check for breast cancer? Bc their risk is low or bc of dense breasts?

Both: Younger women are at lower risk, and the sensitivity of mammo is decreased in the setting of dense breasts (which tend to be in younger women). There is no compelling scientific data that demonstrates any benefit to screening average risk women in their 30s. However, high risk younger women (e.g. BRCA carriers) may be candidates for screening in their 30s or even younger. ...Read more

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What should I expect from a baseline digital mammogram?

What should I expect from a baseline digital mammogram?

Satisfaction...: ...That you have taken a proactive step to check for breast cancer before it is palpable, significantly increasing your chance for cure. Mammograms are screening tests, meaning that they will find many "false alarms" at the expense of not missing cancers. As often as 5-10% of the time, you will be asked to come back for a closer look, ultrasound, etc--don't be alarmed--better safe than... ...Read more

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I am going for a baseline digital mammogram. What should I expect?

A dood idea: Do not apply deodorant that day. The test takes only a few minutes but leave yourself an hour or longer for the paper work and if they had to do more images. Some patients experience some discomfort with the mammogram. But most do not. You should be able to resume your usual activities afterwards. If you don't receive your results in 2-3 weeks call and inquire. Also schedule a clinical breast exam. ...Read more

Dr. Chad Levitt
1 Doctor shared a insight

Screening (Definition)

Examples are: colonoscopy for colon polyp or cancer; mammograms for breast lesions or cancer; psa a blood test that could indicate enlargement of cancerous prostate tissue; blood sugar or hemoglobin a! c for diabetes. Many think that scanning the whole body will pick up a cancer--in all likelihood, it will not. There also is no good blood test, yet, ...Read more