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Mammogram: What to Expect

Q: What should women expect when they have a mammogram?

Dr. Donnica:
A mammogram may be uncomfortable, but it shouldn't hurt. To minimize discomfort, schedule your mammogram for the week after your period begins. Avoid using deodorant or lotions on the day of your mammogram and wear clothing with an easily removable top to make changing easier. 

A radiology technologist will perform the test. She will ask you to undress from the waist up and stand next to the mammogram (x-ray) machine. First, 2 flat surfaces will compress one breast and then the other, for a few seconds each.  While some women report that the compression is uncomfortable, this is necessary to produce the best possible images of your breast tissue while using the least amount of x-ray exposure.

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Created: 11/3/2000  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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