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Imaging
Book an Affordable Mammogram in Ashburn, VA

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What is a mammogram?

A mammogram is an X-ray image of the breast. Regular mammograms are recommended for women over 40 years old. They are used to screen for, diagnose, and monitor treatment for breast cancer. 

How long does a mammogram take? 

Mammogram appointments typically take about 30 minutes. However, the procedure itself only takes about 30 seconds per breast.

Types of Protocols

Protocols are the details and plans that describe how a specific procedure will be performed. For mammograms, this usually means whether the procedure is performed on one or both breasts. 

If you already have a referral, the type of protocol you need should be written directly on it. If you don’t have a referral, you can book one through Tripment Health. 

Bilateral – Bilateral mammograms examine both breasts, whereas unilateral mammograms look at only one breast. 

Bilateral with Ultrasound – Many women have dense breast tissue — this is not considered harmful or even abnormal, but it may prevent doctors from getting a clear view of abnormalities in the breast from a mammogram alone. A bilateral mammogram with an ultrasound is when the doctor performs a mammogram and an ultrasound on both breasts. 

Unilateral – Unilateral mammograms look at only one breast, whereas bilateral mammograms examine both breasts.

Unilateral with Ultrasound – Many women have dense breast tissue — this is not considered harmful or even abnormal, but it may prevent doctors from getting a clear view of abnormalities in the breast from a mammogram alone. A unilateral mammogram with an ultrasound is when the doctor performs a mammogram and an ultrasound on one breast. 

3D Bilateral – Digital mammograms send the images directly to a computer, rather than having to print the images out on film. This is similar to the differences between a film or a digital camera you might use at home.

Preparation for Examination

What is a mammogram?

A mammogram is an X-ray image of the breast. Regular mammograms are recommended for women over 40 years old. They are used to screen for, diagnose, and monitor treatment for breast cancer. 

Does a mammogram hurt? 

Mammograms can be pretty uncomfortable, and for some women, they are even a little painful. However, the amount of time spent with your breasts compressed in the machine is minimal — only about 20 to 30 seconds. 

How do I prepare for a mammogram? 

You don’t need to do much to prepare for a mammogram. Your doctor will likely ask you to refrain from using deodorants, antiperspirants, lotions, creams, or perfumes on your upper body, as particles from these substances can interfere with the image quality.

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Mammogram FAQs

Avoid wearing any creams, deodorants, lotions, or perfumes around your arms or breasts the day of your mammogram. These can affect the images taken of your breasts. Small particles from these products could show up on the images and cause confusion.

Try to go to the same mammography center each year so your images can be easily compared. However, if you are going to a new center, try to forward your previous mammogram images to them. It will also be helpful to your doctor to bring a list of the previous centers you have been to and on what dates, and a list of any other breast treatments you’ve had.

Since images will be taken of your breasts, it will be more comfortable to wear a two-piece outfit so that only your top half will be exposed.

Mammography is the medical X-ray imaging of the inside of a breast. A mammogram is an exam that helps detect or diagnose breast diseases in women.

Mammograms usually only take about 15 minutes.

It depends on your age and other risk factors of developing breast cancer. If you are healthy, it is recommended to get an annual mammogram between the ages of 45 and 55. For women over 55, biannual checkups are recommended. However, if you are in a high-risk category for breast cancer, a doctor will likely order mammograms for you beginning at an earlier age and at a higher frequency.

You can visit Tripment Health to find a mammography facility near you. You can also contact local hospitals, clinics, or women’s centers.

It is recommended that you start getting mammograms at the age of 45. However, if you are in a high-risk category for breast cancer, a doctor might recommend that you start annual checkups at an earlier age.

You should consult your doctor after receiving abnormal mammogram results. Abnormal results do not always indicate that you have breast cancer. An abnormal finding could be a cyst, benign lump, or a non-cancerous tumor. In most cases, you will be called back for a follow-up mammogram to compare the two sets of images to fully understand the situation.

Everyone’s experience is different. Some patients feel pain, while others feel nothing at all. Most women have reported discomfort when pressure is applied during the X-ray process. However, this part should only last a few minutes.

Email us your questions at patients@tripment.com and we will take care of you.

Book an Affordable Mammogram in Ashburn, VA