Regular breast screenings play an important part in detecting breast cancer in its early stages and receiving timely treatment. Thanks to recent advances in imaging technology, breast care specialists are now able to detect the early stages of breast cancer much more efficiently through various devices. Learn what to expect during a routine breast screening with this guide to some of the most common breast imaging procedures:
In combination with clinical breast exams, mammography remains one of the most common methods of breast cancer screening currently in use. Mammograms allow doctors to examine breast tissue for breast cancer and other abnormalities by slightly compressing the breasts in a specialized X-ray machine. Although it may pose slight breast discomfort—particularly preceding and during the menstrual cycle—our imaging specialists here at Menorah Medical Center specialize in softer mammogram techniques through the use of the Mammopad®.
Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, utilizes magnetic waves to produce a much more detailed picture of breast tissue. In combination with a mammography, it can be used to screen high-risk breast cancer individuals more closely, verify a diagnosis, or determine breast cancer stage. MRI tends to be more invasive, as it requires the injection of a contrast agent prior to screening. Additionally, it may not be covered by private insurance plans.
Ultrasounds use high-powered sound waves to create a virtual image of the interior breast, known as a sonogram. It is not used as a breast cancer screening procedure by itself, but may provide additional information about the size and location of abnormal masses.
Breast cancer screening guidelines from the American Cancer Society recommend clinical breast exams for women in their 20s and 30s and annual mammograms for women 40 and over. Join the fight against breast cancer this October with our team of experienced imaging technicians and breast care specialists here at Menorah Medical Center, located in Kansas City. Schedule an exam today by calling our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (913) 498-6000.