Your mammogram may be performed as a SCREENING examination or as a DIAGNOSTIC examination.
A screening mammogram is performed on women without symptoms as a “checkup” once per year beginning at age 40. A minimum of four X-ray pictures, two of each breast, are taken on a special X-ray machine used for mammograms only.
Read more about screening mammograms
Read more about breast density
Mammograms are called diagnostic when they are being done for one of the following reasons:
- A new breast lump, pain, or nipple discharge was noticed by you or your doctor.
- Your recent screening mammogram showed something that requires more X-ray pictures and possibly a sonogram.
- Your last mammogram or sonogram showed something that is being closely followed.
Read more about diagnostic mammograms