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Cushion Your Breasts for Mammograms

Have you ever had a painful mammogram?† Most women haven't.† But those who have had painful experiences are often reluctant to return annually for this potentially life-saving test.† To minimize discomfort, try to schedule your mammogram about 5-7 days after your period.† Some women also find relief by taking ibuprofen an hour before the test.† If these tips don't help, you may want to try the Mammo Pad (TM)--a cushion shown to significantly reduce the discomfort of mammography.† And studies show that unlike antiperspirant, it does not affect the quality of the mammogram.

The Mammo Pad [manufactured by BioLucent Inc.] is a soft, adhesive-backed, single-use foam cushion that is completely "invisible" to mammography X-rays.† The pad was invented by a woman breast surgeon from Stanford University Hospital in hopes that more women would comply with annual screening guidelines.

A study of 500 women patients suggested that the pad improved comfort significantly. Most participants said that the pad made the procedure 'warmer' and 'softer' as compared to having it done on a cold, hard surface without it.

Another bonus of the pad is that technician can increase breast† compression, while improving patient comfort. This in turn can improve image quality. . .and therefore improve the accuracy of the mammogram and decrease the need for repeated imaging.

How important is this?† An American Cancer Society-supported study of long term mortality trends in Sweden showed that women who participated in regular mammography had 63 percent fewer deaths from breast cancer compared with women who did not have regular mammograms.† This shows that no matter how reliable mammography has become, it does nothing for women who choose not to have one.

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Created: 8/13/2001  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.
Reviewed: 6/30/2003  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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