8 doctors weighed in:

Can a mammogram show whether a lump is benign?

8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Michael Gabor
Diagnostic Radiology
3 doctors agree

In brief: Sometimes

Some masses have specific characteristics on mammo that enable the radiologist to make the diagnosis of a benign lesion, without biopsy.
These include: hamartoma, oil cyst, calcified fibroadenoma, fat necrosis, lymph node, calcified cyst. For most other lumps, further imaging, follow up, or biopsy are likely needed.

In brief: Sometimes

Some masses have specific characteristics on mammo that enable the radiologist to make the diagnosis of a benign lesion, without biopsy.
These include: hamartoma, oil cyst, calcified fibroadenoma, fat necrosis, lymph node, calcified cyst. For most other lumps, further imaging, follow up, or biopsy are likely needed.
Dr. Michael Gabor
Dr. Michael Gabor
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2 doctors agree

In brief: No

Only a biopsy will tell for sure if a lump is benign.

In brief: No

Only a biopsy will tell for sure if a lump is benign.
Dr. Stephen Saponaro
Dr. Stephen Saponaro
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Dr. Liawaty Ho
Internal Medicine - Hematology & Oncology

In brief: Not definitively

Due to the limited sensitivity/specificity, in majority cases, mammogram can only give you a suggestion/impression that it possibly is malignant or a benign.
It can not tell you a definite answer. To increase sensitivity/specificity ultrasound needs to be done. However, if you have a palpable lump, a tissue biopsy should be the test to do- to differentiate whether it is benign or cancerous.

In brief: Not definitively

Due to the limited sensitivity/specificity, in majority cases, mammogram can only give you a suggestion/impression that it possibly is malignant or a benign.
It can not tell you a definite answer. To increase sensitivity/specificity ultrasound needs to be done. However, if you have a palpable lump, a tissue biopsy should be the test to do- to differentiate whether it is benign or cancerous.
Dr. Liawaty Ho
Dr. Liawaty Ho
Thank
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