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Different Types of Mammograms  

Are there different types of mammograms?

There are two reasons mammograms are taken:

  • Screening

  • Diagnosis


  • Screening mammograms are done for women who have no symptoms of breast cancer.

    Diagnostic mammograms are done when a woman has symptoms of breast cancer or a breast lump. Diagnostic mammograms take longer than screening mammograms, because more pictures of the breast are taken.

    In January 2000, the FDA approved a new way of doing mammograms, called digital mammography. This technique records x-ray images on a computer, rather than directly on film. Digital mammography has the following advantages:

  • Can allow the technician taking the x-ray to make adjustments, such as enhancement, magnification, or other manipulation without having to take another mammogram

  • Can reduce exposure to radiation, due to reduction of the need for repeat mammograms

  • Takes pictures of the entire breast, even if the denseness of the breast tissue varies

  • Compared to film mammography, digital mammography is more sensitive for detection of abnormalities in women with dense breasts, pre-menopausal women, perimenopausal women, and women <50 years of age[1, 2]

    REFERENCES

    1. National Cancer Institute. Digital mammography trial results announced: women with dense breasts, women younger than 50, and those who are perimenopausal may benefit from digital mammograms. Accessed at www.cancer.gov/newscenter/pressreleases/DMISTrelease
    2. E. D. Pisano, C. Gatsonis, E. Hendrick, M. Yaffe, et al. Diagnostic performance of digital versus film mammography for breast cancer screening. New England Journal of Medicine. 2005; 353(37):1773-1783.


  • Questions Related to Different Types of Mammograms
    What is a mammogram?
    Do mammograms prevent breast cancer?
    I have had a mastectomy, but the cancer has been in remission for 2 years. Should I get a mammogram on the other breast?
    Who should get a mammogram? When? How often?
    If mammograms are so good at detecting nonsymptomatic tumors, why should I bother with a monthly breast self exam (BSE)?
    I have breast implants. How can I get properly screened?
    What is a digital mammogram? Is it better than a film mammogram?
    Are mammograms safe?
    How is a mammogram performed?
    How can I get ready for my mammogram?
    Are there any problems with mammography?
    Are mammograms painful?
    Where should I get a mammogram?
    What if my health insurance does not cover mammograms?
    I don't have health insurance. Where can I get a free or low-cost mammogram?
    How often should I get a mammogram?
    How long until you get the results of your mammogram?
    What is an ultrasound? What is ultrasonography? When are these procedures recommended as an examination of the breast?
    Why are mammograms not recommended for women under 30?
    Does the radiation from a mammogram cause cancer?
    How accurate are mammograms?
    Are mammograms less accurate if you are significantly overweight?
    What is "implantation displacement view?"
    I have heard of the Eklund Technique for women with breast implants. What is the Eklund Technique exactly?
    I've heard that mammograms can cause implants to burst. Is this true?
    Are MRIs better than mammograms for screening young women with a high breast cancer risk?
    Should I get a mammogram if I am pregnant?
    What happens if a woman detects an abnormality while she is nursing?
    What is breast thermography? Does it give accurate results? Is it used in combination with or instead of mammography?
    What is a sonogram? What is the purpose of a sonogram? What do the results of a sonogram mean?
    What is a spot compression mammogram?
    What is spot compression?
    I am breastfeeding my child. Can I have a mammogram?
    How can I find and participate in a clinical trial on screening for breast cancer?
    What is the SureTouch Visual Mapping System?
    What is a clinical breast exam with tactile sensing technology?
    What does a Category 0 mammogram result mean?
    What does a Category 0/Level 4 result of a mammogram mean?
    What does a Category 1 mammogram result mean?
    What does a Category 2 mammogram result mean?
    What does a Category 3 mammogram result mean?
    What does a Category 4 mammogram result mean?
    What does a Category 5 mammogram result mean?
    How effective are mammograms in detecting breast cancer?
    What is a clinical breast exam?
    How often should I get a clinical breast exam?
    What does screening mean?

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