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ACR Recommends Mammogram at 40

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in American women, and the disease doesn’t discriminate.

Celebrities such as Olivia Newton-John, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Shannon Doherty are three well-known women who have faced breast cancer.

In 2020, actress Kelly Preston’s death at 57 shocked many. Preston — the wife of actor John Travolta — had been fighting breast cancer in silence for two years before succumbing to the disease.

The COVID-19 quarantine caused many women to miss their mammogram. Since March 2020, nearly 400 of our patients skipped their appointments. Delaying or avoiding necessary treatments can put your health at risk.

Early detection is key to preventing and fighting breast cancer. The American College of Radiology recommends women begin routine annual mammograms at 40.

Our 3D Mammography provides patients with the highest quality of breast imagining. The detailed 3D images help detect masses and/or lesions more clearly and are superior for women with dense breast tissue.

SMC’s Diagnostic Imaging is accredited in Mammography by the American College of Radiology.

To schedule a mammogram, call 888-707-7621.

Have You Had Your Mammogram?

Mammography is an essential part of healthy living for women. Early detection is key to preventing breast cancer and SMC’s goal is to help you do just that.

SMC’s 3D Mammography system provides patients with the highest standard of care in breast imaging and is superior for women with dense breast tissue.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you 40 or older?
  • Have you felt a lump in your breast or armpit?
  • Do you have thickening or swelling in part of your breast?
  • Do you have redness, flaky skin, or pain near the nipple area of the breast?
  • Have you had any discharge other than breast milk, including blood?
  • Are you constantly tired?
  • Do you have a family history of breast cancer?

If you answered “Yes” to at least one of these questions, it’s time to get a mammogram.

To schedule a mammogram, call 888-707-7621.

Q&A with Lead Mammographer Amy Robinson

Many women have questions when it comes to getting a mammogram. Below, SMC Lead Mammographer Amy Robinson, ARRT (R)(M) answers a few questions concerning mammograms.

Why should a woman get a mammogram?

Early detection is the key to preventing and fighting breast cancer. We can get a clear, detailed picture of the breast with our 3D mammography which helps us detect masses or lesions quickly and precisely so the patient can begin treatment as soon as possible.

When should women begin a yearly mammogram routine?

According to the American College of Radiology, women should start annual mammograms at age 40. It’s recommended to have a mammogram every year.

When should a patient with a family history of breast cancer get a mammogram?

Women who are considered higher risk need to begin mammography earlier. Patients with immediate family history of breast cancer should begin screenings 10 years earlier than the age their relative was when diagnosed.

Also, if the patient or a family member has one of the two breast cancer genes — BRCA1 or BRCA 2 —mammograms should begin as soon as the gene is found.

How should a patient prepare for a mammogram?

There’s not much preparation needed. Breasts can be tender the week before and after menstruation, so try to avoid scheduling during those times. On the day of your appointment, don’t use deodorant, powder, lotion, or perfume, as those substances could interfere with the image.

What happens after a mammogram?

The radiologist will send the report to the patient’s primary care physician. We will mail the patient their results within a couple of days of the reading.

Between five and 15 percent of mammogram patients are called back for additional imaging after the initial mammogram. The patient could need an additional mammogram view or additional imaging through other methods such as ultrasound or MRI.

Is it safe to get a mammogram during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Yes. We take the safety of our patients and staff very seriously. All equipment is sterilized between each patient and all staff members are required to wear a mask and social distance when possible. During the mammogram, staff will wear a mask and the necessary PPE to keep everyone safe.

Do patients need a prescription to schedule a mammogram?

Yes, but if you don’t have a primary care physician, we will be happy to refer you to a physician.

Effectively all insurance contracts prior to the transition to Salem Medical Center on February 1, 2019, are currently active and in full force.
Salem Medical Center complies with applicable federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex. Please click the link to see our complete Notice of Nondiscrimination.