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A mammogram is an X-ray test of the breasts (mammary glands) used to screen for breast problems, such as a lump, and whether a lump is fluid-filled (a cyst) or a solid mass.
WHEN TEST WOULD BE PERFORMED
A mammogram is done to help screen for or detect breast cancer. Many small tumors can be seen on a mammogram before they can be felt by a woman or her health professional. Cancer is most easily treated and cured when it is discovered in an early stage. Mammograms do not prevent breast cancer or reduce a woman's risk of developing cancer. However, regular mammograms can reduce a woman's risk of dying from breast cancer by detecting a cancer when it is more easily treated.
• Imaging of the breast improves a physician's ability to detect small tumors. When cancers are small, the woman has more treatment options and a cure is more likely.
False Positive Mammograms. Five percent to 15 percent of screening mammograms require more testing such as additional mammograms or ultrasound. Most of these tests turn out to be normal. If there is an abnormal finding, a follow-up or biopsy may have to be performed. Most of the biopsies confirm that no cancer was present. It is estimated that a woman who has yearly mammograms between ages 40 and 49 has about a 30 percent chance of having a false-positive mammogram at some time.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 21 January 2010 10:09|