Mammography Defined:

Mammography is a safe, painless and non-invasive type of imaging that uses a low-dose X-ray to examine the breasts. A mammography exam, called a mammogram, is used to aid in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases.

Mammography Benefits:

  • Early detection of small breast cancers by screening mammograms improves a woman's chances for successful treatment. If breast cancer is diagnosed and treated while still confined to the breast ducts the cure rate is close to 100%.
  • Breast cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer among woman and is the second leading cause of cancer deaths.
  • The American Cancer Society reports that a recent compilation of eight randomized clinical trials found 18% fewer deaths from breast cancer among women in their 40s who had mammograms.

The Mammography Experience:

The patient is asked to undress from the waist up and is provided a gown. Depending on the type of equipment used, the patient will sit or stand.

One breast at a time is rested on a flat surface that contains the X-ray plate. A device called a compressor will be pressed firmly against the breast to help flatten out the breast tissue.

The X-ray pictures are taken from several angles. The patient may be asked to hold their breath as each picture is taken.


Do not wear deodorant, perfume, powders, or ointments under the arms or on the breasts on the day of the mammogram. Remove all jewelry from your neck and chest area.