Tips for your ease, comfort and an accurate exam
Regular mammograms help find cancer in its early stages, when it's usually easier to treat. In fact, when breast cancer is detected before it spreads, the average 5-year survival rate is 99%.
Schedule your mammogram for the week after your period, when your breasts are less likely to be swollen and tender. If you have implants, tell the facility when you make the appointment.
Arrange for any previous mammograms to be sent for comparison. Or get copies to bring with you.
WHAT TO AVOID
On the day of your mammogram, don't use deodorant, powders, lotions or perfumes on your chest or arms. These products can show up as white spots on your mammogram, affecting its accuracy.
HOW TO DRESS
Wear a top or blouse—with pants or a skirt—rather than a dress. That way, you'll only need to undress from the waist up.
SPEAK UP AT YOUR EXAM
Let the technologist know about any concerns you have about your breasts.
KNOW WHAT TO EXPECT
Find out when and how you'll be notified of the results of your mammogram.
PROTECT YOUR FUTURE
Women age 45 or older should get regular mammograms, according to the American Cancer Society. Women with a high risk of breast cancer should start screening earlier.
Review your risk for breast cancer with your doctor, and determine a screening schedule that’s right for you.
What's your personal risk of breast cancer?
With this assessment tool, you can learn more about what raises breast cancer risk and which of those factors apply to you.
- American Cancer Society. "American Cancer Society Recommendations for the Early Detection of Breast Cancer." https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/screening-tests-and-early-detection/american-cancer-society-recommendations-for-the-early-detection-of-breast-cancer.html.
- American Cancer Society. "Breast Cancer Early Detection and Diagnosis." Breast Cancer Early Detection and Diagnosis | How To Detect Breast Cancer.
- American Cancer Society. "Breast Cancer Facts & Figures." https://www.cancer.org/research/cancer-facts-statistics/breast-cancer-facts-figures.html.
- American Cancer Society. "Cancer Facts and Statistics." Cancer Facts and Statistics.
- MedlinePlus. "Mammogram." https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003380.htm.
- RadiologyInfo.org. "Mammography." https://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info/mammo#preparation.