If you are scheduled for your first mammogram, you may be wondering what to expect. You probably have heard lots of mixed reviews from women, and you’re probably wondering what your experience will be like. Some women think it’s no big deal, while others may feel like it’s the worst!
The American Cancer Society has specific guidelines for early detection of cancer.
- Women ages 40 to 44 should have the choice to start annual breast cancer screening with mammograms if they wish to do so.
- Women age 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year.
- Women 55 and older should switch to mammograms every 2 years, or can continue yearly screening.
If you’re getting a mammogram for the first time, congratulations! You’re taking a very important step toward taking care of yourself and your breasts! Each imaging facility varies, however there are some common things you can typically expect during your mammogram.
- You will not be able to wear deodorant or antiperspirant the day of your exam.
- You will need to remove your top and bra for the exam and wear a robe or wrap during it.
- The technologist will be the only one in the room with you and will position your breasts for your mammogram.
- During the time, your breast must be flattened periodically. This is accomplished by using the machine’s plates to compress each one while a picture is taken, which will last for a few seconds.
- The entire process takes approximately 20 minutes, but the actual breast compression is only a few seconds at a time.
As part of Marietta OB-GYN Affiliates’ women’s wellness programs, we include annual physicals and pap smears, mammography referrals and much more. Contact our office to schedule your appointment today.