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Mammograms, Breast Care and You

What you need to know about the new breast guidelines

It’s time to schedule your annual mammogram. You know that mammograms are important for breast health. You know they detect breast cancer in the early stages when it is more easily treated. You know that they can be lifesaving and life changing. Aside from this knowledge, you still might be confused about when you should start getting a mammogram and what to expect. Midwest Breast Care has the answers you need to put you at ease for your next mammogram.

Who needs a mammogram?

  • In 2015, the American Cancer Society updated their breast cancer screening guidelines, writing that it is optional for women ages 40 to 44 to have yearly mammogram screenings.
  • The American College of Radiology and the Society of Breast Imaging recommends that any women aged 40 and older schedule annual mammograms.
  • Midwest Breast Care follows the guidelines of the American College of Radiology.

What can you expect at your mammogram appointment?

  • Your mammogram will last about 10-15 minutes.
  • Most insurances cover annual mammograms at no cost to you.
  • In an annual screening mammogram, images are taken of each breast from two angles. One at a time, your breast will be carefully positioned between the adjustable platform and clear plate and brief pressure will be applied to flatten the breast tissue in order to get the clearest picture.

How to prepare for your mammogram?

  • We will call you prior to your appointment to provide specific instructions and review health and insurance information.
  • You will need to provide the name, address and phone number of any facility where you have had a prior mammogram or bring previous films. The radiologist may need your previous films for comparison in order to make an accurate assessment.
  • Notify a member of our staff if you are nursing or if there is a chance you could be pregnant.

When will you know your mammogram results?

  • A radiologist who specializes in breast imaging will review your mammography images and prepare a report for your provider.
  • Your provider will consider the written report in context of your overall care, and contact you about the results. The results from your mammogram will also be mailed to you within 2 weeks.
  • If additional images are recommended, you will receive a phone call from our staff within 24-48 business hours to schedule the follow-up diagnostic procedure.

For more information about how you can prepare for your mammogram, read about screening mammograms here, or take a look at mammogram content on our blog