What is a screening mammogram?
Mammograms are one of the primary tools that doctors use to detect breast cancer in patients. They play a key role in ensuring that cancers are caught early - before they spread and while they are still easily treatable.
Mammograms take x-rays of the breasts to screen for cancer, as well as for other abnormalities, like cysts, calcifications, and fibroadenomas. Screening mammography is one of the primary tools that doctors use to screen patients for breast cancer.
The American College of Radiology (ACR) and the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) recommend that all women should "have a risk assessment at age 30 to see if a screen earlier than age 40 is needed."
A screening mammogram is a preliminary exam used to detect breast cancer in women who have displayed no signs or symptoms and are at average risk for cancer. A diagnostic mammogram, on the other hand, is used after a screening mammogram to examine a suspicious lump or mass in the breast.
Screening mammograms are not used for diagnosis. Instead, they offer your health care team a baseline to compare future mammograms against.