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Doctor insights on: Mammogram Digital Bilateral

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Are there different types of mammograms or does everyone do digital now?

Are there different types of mammograms or does everyone do digital now?

There are: Mammograms are analog and digital. Analog is the older way by processing films. Digital is the newer way in which the processing is done digitally by computers. Many mammography facilities have converted to digital. There are however, still some which offer the analog mammograms. Either way it is best for womwen to follow american cancer society's recommendation for yearly screening after age 40.

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Dr. Barry Rosen
662 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 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...

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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.

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Should I be concerned if small calcifications show up on a digital mammogram?

Should I be concerned if small calcifications show up on a digital mammogram?

Maybe: The majority of times calcifications seen on mammogram represent benign (not cancer) changes. However, new calcifications, or those that are different shapes/sizes or appear to be distributed along the length of a milk duct could indicate cancer so needle biopsy is sometimes recommended. Comparison to old mammograms can be helpful to determine if biopsy is needed or not.

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If small calcifications show up on a digital mammogram, should you be concerned?

If small calcifications show up on a digital mammogram, should you be concerned?

Not necessarily: The majority of women undergoing mammography will have calcifications on their mammogram. A small percentage will need to be looked at closer and may require a biopsy.

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What is a Bilateral ultrasound. I received a letter that I have it done after I had a mammogram?

What is a Bilateral ultrasound. I received a letter that I have it done after I had a mammogram?

Both breasts: Bilateral means both sides. If after a mammogram of both breasts a bilateral ultrasound is recommended, an ultrasound on both breasts is what they suggest to do.

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For best detection which is best digital mammogram or sonogram?

For best detection which is best digital mammogram or sonogram?

Mammogram: A mammogram (preferably digital) is still the best screening imaging tool. Ultrasound is not currently used as a universal screening modality. However, it is an excellen adjunct test if there is a clinical, mammographic or MRI abnormality which needs further evaluation. In addition ultrasound is also very effective in targetting a lesion which may need a biopsy if it can be seen by ultrasound.

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For breast which is best digital mammogram or sonogram?

For breast which is best digital mammogram or sonogram?

Depends, maybe both: A digital mammogram is the standard for mammograms. Sometimes an ultrasound may be added to get more information, especially if you have dense breast tissue. In younger women with dense breasts, a mammogram may no be done and then we go straight to ultrasound. A breast radiologist and breast surgeon will be able to make the appropriate recommendation for you.

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If small calcifications show up on a digital mammogram, should I be concerned about cancer?

If small calcifications show up on a digital mammogram, should I be concerned about cancer?

Need follow up: Calcifications can be benign or malignant. If malignant, it is usually a early, treatable cancer. If calcifications are on a mammogram that were not present before, you need additional mammogram views. This includes magnification for a better look. In most instances, it will be recommended to repeat the views in 3-6 months. In some cases a biopsy may be necessary.

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Which is a better diagnostic procedure a digital mammogram or sonogram?

Digital mammogram: For general screening, mammograms, while imperfect, remain the best tool and digital mammograms are better at "seeing through" breast tissue. A mammogram is more likely to miss cancers in women with dense breast tissue and young women. Ultrasound is most often used with mammogram either to help characterize abnormalities seen on mammogram or to aid in finding abnormalities in dense breast tissue.

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I'm 55 and have very dense, cystic breasts. I just had my yearly digital mammogram and it was inconclusive?

I'm 55 and have very dense, cystic breasts. I just had my yearly digital mammogram and it was inconclusive?

Define INCONCLUSIVE: After having a mammogram, the report should include a follow-up plan, listed as a birads code. This will spell out exactly what the next step should be: immediate further testing (ultrasound, compression mamm, mri), short-term follow-up, biopsy, etc. If you don't have a clear understanding of the next steps, please talk to the doctor who ordered your mammogram or see a breast specialist. Good luck.

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I have very dense, cystic breasts. I just had my yearly digital mammogram and it was inconclusive. Should I write my will?

No: This means that the mammogram did not provide enough information because your breasts a difficult for the x-rays to penetrate. Contact your doctor or radiologist to see what is the next step. Most likely you will need a ultrasound as the next step. When you have cystic breasts, it is common to require additional pictures beyond a mammogram.

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Bilateral calcifications were seen in the upper right area on a baseline mammogram. Can breastfeeding cause calcifications? I just stopped nursing 6 months ago...

Bilateral calcifications were seen in the upper right area on a baseline mammogram. Can breastfeeding cause calcifications? I just stopped nursing 6 months ago...

Yes: There are many things than can cause calcifications in your breasts. Breast tissue is very dynamic and turns over like your uterus (with each cycles). Fortunately, most calcifications are benign (not bad), and a good close-up view is all that is needed. Talk with your radiologist, and they should be able to give you an idea of what they think.

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Can a radiologist tell if a nodule is cancer just by looking a on a digital mammogram?

Can a radiologist tell if a nodule is cancer just by looking a on a digital mammogram?

No. Diagnostic: Radiologists specialize in mammo interpretation, but they describe findings, suggest more imaging, but the truth comes only after biopsy. Screening is done with x-rays that are not sensitive in many cases, diagnsotic procedures can be much more sensitive. False results, positives and negatives, plague x-ray mammograms.

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Can a radiologist tell if a nodule is cancer or not just by looking on a digital mammogram?

Can a radiologist tell if a nodule is cancer or not just by looking on a digital mammogram?

Biopsy for diagnosis: A radiologist may suggest that a nodule has the characteristics of cancer, but definitive diagnosis requires biopsy or removal of the nodule and examination of the tissue by a pathologist.

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How much radiation is there in a digital mammogram? The clinic keeps telling me it's like a plane flight, but I don't believe them.

How much radiation is there in a digital mammogram? The clinic keeps telling me it's like a plane flight, but I don't believe them.

Radiation: Mammograms require very small doses of radiation. The risk of harm from this radiation exposure is extremely low, but repeated x-rays have the potential to cause cancer. The benefits of mammography, however, nearly always outweigh the potential harm from the radiation exposure. Digital mammograms use slightly less radiation than conventional.

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I just got a mammogram in February and it came back a 1 with bilateral benign clarifications. I recently felt a mass close to my nipple, which I can?

I just got a mammogram in February and it came back a 1 with bilateral benign clarifications. I recently felt a mass close to my nipple, which I can?

Regardless: Of how the mammo was interpreted, if you feel a new Breast mass, see your doctor for en evaluation. You may need a Breast ultrasound and/or additional mammographic views.

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I have few scattered calcific foci in bilateral breast. No other focal lesion seen in mammogram of both breasts. Should I get worried?

I have few scattered calcific foci in bilateral breast. No other focal lesion seen in mammogram of both breasts. Should I get worried?

Concerned: And follow-up. To be calcified, these have existed for a while. Self and professional exams are important, along with excellent mammograms. Your gyn and / or breast specialist will follow with you.

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