Breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women, except for skin cancer.
Facing a breast cancer diagnosis is difficult. That is why we encourage women to ask many questions—and even get second opinions—about their breast care.
A mammogram is a low-dose digital X-ray
of your breast. It uses very little radiation to
get an image of your breast tissue.
A mammogram is the only screening test
that has been shown to decrease the chance
of dying from breast cancer.
The exam will take about 20 minutes.
You may be asked to come back for more
images. This means the radiologist may
want a more detailed view of a specific area
of the breast. A "call back" does not mean
you have cancer or that the mammogram
was not done correctly.
When to start having mammograms to
screen for breast cancer, and how often to
have them, is a personal decision. It should
be based on your preferences, your values
and your risk for developing breast cancer.
Allina Health recommends that you and your
health care provider together determine when
mammograms are right for you.
Allina Health recommends the following
guidelines for women who have an average
risk for breast cancer, based on American
Cancer Society guidelines:
If you have a higher than average risk for
breast cancer, your health care provider may
recommend a different schedule.
Talk with your health care provider about your
risk level. Together, you and your health care
provider can decide what screening schedule is
right for you
If you have questions about the exam
(other than insurance coverage), please call
your health care provider.
Check with your insurance provider to see
if the mammogram(s) will be covered. Your
health care provider's recommendation for
services does not guarantee coverage by your
Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Mammogram, can-ah-15311 (12/16)
Allina Health's Patient Education Department
Learn more about mammography, and see all the locations that offer mammograms.
Worried about inheriting breast cancer or passing it on? Ask your doctor if genetic counseling is appropriate for you.