Mammograms: What to Expect, How to Prepare

Mammograms: What to Expect, How to Prepare

Join MMH for a tour of the MMH Women’s Imaging Center and a free Lunch this Friday for National Mammography Day. Massena Memorial Hospital Women's Imaging Center offers state-of-the-art Digital Stereotactic Mammography
Skipping regular mammograms after age 50 could double the risk of being diagnosed with late-stage breast cancer, says the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. However, catching breast cancer early makes it easier to treat successfully.

Research shows that women ages 50 to 64 who get mammograms at least every two years are 30 to 40 percent less likely to die of breast cancer than those who isn’t screened as often.

Massena Memorial Hospital would like you to join us for National Mammography Day, this Friday, October 19th at the MMH Women’s’ Imaging Center; tour MMH's Women’s' Imaging Center from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The tours are being offered by MMH’s dedicated  Mammography staff members: Paula Marshall , RT, ( R), (M), ARRT and Jennifer DeSilva, RT, ( R), (M), ARRT.  Every woman attending will receive a gift and can register for door prize for National Breast Health/Cancer Month.

Also, you can attend free Luncheon. Dr. Terence Schumpert, Radiologist, will speak on Breast Health/Cancer and treatments. Lunch is 12 noon in the Wing Board Room; seating is limited, please pre-register, at 769-4262. Again, every woman attending will receive a voucher for a free mammogram (or co-pay if she has insurance.) that can be used within the next 12 months. MMH Mammography services are Accredited by the American College of Radiology and certified by the Food & Drug Administration.

This program is sponsored by Massena Memorial Hospital and St. Lawrence Radiology Associates.

The American Cancer Society recommends yearly mammograms for women ages 40 and older. The National Cancer Institute’s guidelines call for screening every one to two years for women in this age group. However, women who face an increased breast cancer risk—those with a personal or family history of this cancer, for example—may need earlier or more frequent screening. Both organizations advise these women to discuss an appropriate screening schedule with their doctors.
    "When getting your exams done annually, we are better able to detect problems and often allows for more treatment options, which is the best strategy for successful treatment," said Paul Marshall, Massena Memorial Hospital Mammography/Radiologic Technologist. Massena Memorial Hospital Women’s Imaging Center offers a comfortable and private setting for a woman to have her mammogram. Exams are offered five days a week from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. with three dedicated Radiologic Technologist who specializes in Mammography. They are Paula Marshall, and Jen DeSilva. Both Marshall and DeSilva are certified technologist in Mammography by the American Registry of Radiologist Technologists (ARRT).
    Before your mammogram, expect to undress above the waist—you will be given a gown or wrap to wear.
    During the procedure, a special X-ray machine will push each breast between two panels before taking a picture. You will feel some pressure and maybe discomfort. However, this X-ray lasts for only a few seconds. Usually, technicians take two pictures of each breast.
    The apprehension and discomfort that many women experience having a mammogram can now be largely overcome with the use of a new screening tool called a "mammopad.” The pad is used to encourage more women to comply with mammography screening guidelines. There have been many studies that show that breast discomfort is the major reason given by women who do not return for follow up screenings. MMH Women’s Imaging Center offers the mammopad to alleviate patient discomfort during the exam. A single-use, soft, foam pad cushions the breast on the mammography machine. It is made of radiolucent material, which means that it allows the x-ray light to pass through it without affecting the image quality.
    Take these steps before your mammogram:
• If you are still menstruating, have mammograms the week after your period, when breasts generally are less tender.
• Don’t wear lotion, powder, perfume, or deodorant under your arms or on your breasts the day of the exam. These products can cause shadows on the X-rays.
• Bring a list of places and dates of mammograms, biopsies, or other breast-related procedures you have had before.
• Tell your doctor and X-ray technician if you are or might be pregnant.


September 2015

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