Skip to main content

What to Expect at Your Mammogram

Don't be afraid! It is understandable that mammograms can cause some apprehension. We walk you through the process below to help you be prepared for what to expect.

To schedule a mammogram, call 1-888-843-8133.

Scheduling your mammogram...

  • You can schedule your mammogram at any time. Ideally, the best time is seven to ten days after starting your menstrual cycle.
  • Know that you will be exposed to a low amount of radiation from the x-ray, so make sure you tell the doctor or technologist before the test if you are pregnant or think you might be.
  • If this is not your first mammogram, you will need to bring your most recent films. Reports from previous mammograms are helpful!

The day of your test...

  • Do not use deodorants, body powders, lotions or creams to your underarms or chest area that could potentially affect how the test is interpreted.
  • You may be asked the same questions repeatedly leading up to your exam. This is on purpose! We are verifying and re-verifying your important information to ensure that your time with us is as safe as possible.

During the test...

  • You will be directed to a dressing room and asked to remove all clothing and jewelry above the waist. A gown will be provided for the exam.
  • Once in the exam room, your technologist will maintain your privacy while you remove your gown to expose your breast.
  • It is important to inform your technologist if you have breast implants, had a breast biopsy or surgery, are breastfeeding or have scars or moles on or near your breasts. A removable marker will be placed on moles or scars to identify sites that may look like masses. These markers will also be placed on your nipples for measurement purposes.
  • While standing in front of the x-ray machine, your technologist will set a platform to your height and place your breast on the top. Another plate is then placed on top of your breast and a gentle, firm pressure is applied that will compress your breast tissue. You may be uncomfortable for a few seconds, but please let your technologist know if you experience significant pain.
  • Two pictures will be taken of each breast as you hold your breath and remain still. Once completed, this process will be repeated to the opposite side of your chest.

After the test...

  • Once the exam is complete, you will return to the waiting room as the technologist confirms that the films/images are clear.
  • The technologist cannot discuss results with you on the day of the exam. A Radiologist will review the results and send them to your doctor to be discussed at your next physicians' office visit.
  • You may be asked to return for an additional mammogram after initial results are read. This doesn't necessarily mean you have breast cancer. Something may be unclear or need additional inspection by the radiologist.

That's all there is to it!