Making Mammograms Easier
Because mammograms are a doctor’s best tool for detecting changes in your breasts, they are vital in assessing your total breast health. Here are few a tips from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to make getting a mammogram a little easier:
Many women say that getting a mammogram can be uncomfortable because of the pressure applied to the breasts for x-rays. Try to avoid scheduling your mammogram when your breasts are more likely to be tender or swollen, such as the week before or during your period.
To help ensure accuracy when physicians read your mammogram, avoid wearing deodorant, perfume or talcum powder on the day of your exam. Sometimes ingredients in these products can show up as white spots on a mammogram. Also, you might be most comfortable in a top and pants or skirt, since wearing a dress on the day of your appointment will mean that you have to fully undress for the mammogram.
You might find it useful to bring notes to your appointment about your health and family histories. You will be asked to describe any breast symptoms, changes or problems to your health care team. They may also ask you about your medical history, such as prior surgeries or injuries, hormone use, and family or personal history of breast cancer.
Radiologists look for changes in your breasts, and the capability to compare mammograms over the years is extremely helpful. If you are new to a facility or doctor, try to arrange for your previous mammograms to be sent to the facility before your appointment.
The Lovelace Women’s Hospital Breast Care Center is New Mexico’s only breast care center accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers for providing the highest level of quality care to its patients. Our team of breast health professionals will help you assess your risk of developing breast cancer, guide you through mammograms and clinical exams and teach you the proper method of breast self-examination. We also offer counseling, education and support programs.
For more information or to schedule a clinical breast exam or mammogram, call 505.727.6900 or visit our website.