Mammography imaging uses a low-dose x-ray for the early detection of breast cancers. Our board-certified radiologists use 3D and 2D digital imaging techniques and computer-aided detection to find even the smallest abnormality and deliver the most accurate diagnosis possible.
The Hermel Breast Health Center is designated a “Breast Imaging Center of Excellence” by the Commission on Quality and Safety and the Commission on Breast Imaging by the American College of Radiology
Mammography services are available at the Hermel Breast Health Center and Westford Health Center.
TO SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT
Call 1-978-287-8107 to schedule an appointment for mammography.
TO OBTAIN TEST RESULTS
Requires a signed medical records release and ID.
Just reports: 978-287-3870
Reports & images: 978-287-8100
If you have any questions or concerns about mammography, we encourage you to contact us. Our experienced team will address your concerns candidly, respectfully and attentively.
Preparing for a Mammogram
- Schedule the test for a time when your breasts are least likely to be tender. If you haven't gone through menopause, your breasts are most likely to be tender the week before and the week during your period.
- If you have previous mammogram images, please bring them to your appointment so that the radiologist can compare them with your new images.
- Avoid using deodorants, antiperspirants, powders, lotions, creams or perfumes under your arms or on your breasts before your appointment. Metallic particles in powders and deodorants can show up on your mammogram, obscure information in the images and affect the results of your mammogram.
- If you are worried about the discomfort caused by the mammogram, you may take an over-the counter pain medication such as aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen up to one hour before your exam.
What to Expect During the Exam
- You’ll be given a gown and asked to remove neck jewelry and clothing from the waist up. To make this easier, we suggest wearing a two-piece outfit that day.
- A mammogram involves pressing acrylic plates against your breasts and may cause some discomfort. You will then wait while the technologist checks your x-rays to make sure the pictures do not need to be re-done. The entire procedure usually takes less than 30 minutes.
After the Exam
- After your mammogram, you may dress and resume normal activity.
- Federal law requires mammogram facilities to send your results within 30 days, but you can usually expect to receive your results sooner.
- If further intervention is needed, most are made with an accurate, less invasive stereotactic or ultrasound-guided needle biopsy (available in Concord).
- Our experienced team provides personal attention, technical expertise and conscientious follow-through during and after your visit.
- Screening mammography is covered by insurance. If you are scheduled for a follow-up or re-call exam, which are considered diagnostic procedures, you should contact your insurance to determine your coverage (deductible, co-pay, self-pay).
A mammogram is an x-ray examination of the breast, most often used to look for early signs of breast cancer. Regular mammograms are the best tests doctors have to find breast cancer early, sometimes up to three years before it can be felt. Early detection is important in all cancer types, especially breast cancer.
Mammography cannot prove that an abnormal area is cancer, but if it raises a significant suspicion of cancer, tissue can be removed for further evaluation through a biopsy.
Mammography has been used for 40 years, and continuing technical advancements greatly improve both the technique and results. For example, Emerson Hospital Radiology now uses 3D imaging units to better screen patients with dense tissue. Today’s technology also provides images that are high in quality but with screenings that are low in radiation dose.
Radiation risks of mammograms are considered to be negligible.
For additional information visit www.radiologyinfo.org
To learn more about mammograms, visit the American Cancer Society links below: