Our 24/7 cancer helpline provides information and answers for people dealing with cancer. We can connect you with trained cancer information specialists who will answer questions about a cancer diagnosis and provide guidance and a compassionate ear.
Our highly trained specialists are available 24/7 via phone and on weekdays can assist through video calls and online chat. We connect patients, caregivers, and family members with essential services and resources at every step of their cancer journey. Ask us how you can get involved and support the fight against cancer. Some of the topics we can assist with include:
For medical questions, we encourage you to review our information with your doctor.
A mammogram is an important step in taking care of yourself and your breasts. Whether you’re a mammogram newbie or a veteran, knowing what to expect may help the process go more smoothly.
Don’t be afraid of mammograms! Remember that only about 2 to 4 screening mammograms in 1,000 lead to a diagnosis of breast cancer.
To help ensure you have a good quality mammogram, make sure your technologist knows:
Tell the technologist right away if you start feeling lightheaded or dizzy during the mammogram.
A diagnostic mammogram is often done if a woman has breast symptoms or if something unusual is seen on a screening mammogram. The basic procedure is similar to that for a screening mammogram, but there are some differences.
A full report of the results of your mammogram will be sent to your health care provider. If you don’t hear from your health care provider within 10 days, do not assume that your mammogram was normal. Call your provider or the facility where the mammogram was done.
The mammography facility also must provide you with an easy-to-understand summary of your mammogram results within 30 days—or “as quickly as possible” if the results suggest something abnormal is present. If you have online access to your medical records, such as through a patient portal, your results might show up there at the same time your health care provider gets them. This means you could get the results before your health care provider contacts you. Be sure to go over the results with your provider, especially if there's anything you don't understand.
We can help you learn more about how to understand your mammogram report.
Our team is made up of doctors and oncology certified nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.
Helvie MA, Patterson SK. Chapter 11: Imaging Analysis: Mammography. In: Harris JR, Lippman ME, Morrow M, Osborne CK, eds. Diseases of the Breast. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2014.
Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). Mammography. 2021. Accessed at https://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info/mammo on September 29, 2021.
Rosenberg RD, Hunt WC, Williamson MR, et al. Effects of age, breast density, ethnicity, and estrogen replacement therapy on screening mammographic sensitivity and cancer stage at diagnosis: Review of 183,134 screening mammograms in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Radiology 1998;209:511–518.
US Food and Drug Administration. Direct-to-Patient Mammogram Results: It’s the Law. 2018. Accessed at https://www.fda.gov/radiation-emitting-products/mqsa-insights/direct-patient-mammogram-results-its-law on September 29, 2021.
Last Revised: January 14, 2022
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