The importance of getting a yearly Mammogram cannot be overstated. Radiologists perform X-rays to detect any abnormalities in the breast and surrounding tissue. Abnormalities in the breast area come in the form of tumors which may be either benign or malignant, but can only be confirmed by a screening.
According to the American College of Radiology (ACR), screenings usually take less than 15 minutes and can help detect early signs of breast cancer. Early detection is crucial. If a tumor is spotted, early treatment allows for a greater chance of survival. Most doctors recommend starting mammography check-ups around the age of 45-50 years old and encourage women to continue scheduling annual mammograms afterward, even if there were no signs the year before.
Where Can I Schedule a Mammogram?
Health insurance plans almost always cover mammograms. You can schedule a mammogram through your regular healthcare provider, or search for local clinics offering the service. Check out some of these great providers; YWCA Encore Plus Programs, Planned Parenthood Clinics, and American Cancer Society. The National Breast Cancer Foundation's National Mammography Program also offers free mammograms. To find the nearest in your area, click here.
Make sure the clinic you visit is approved by the FDA. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration screens all facilities that offer mammograms to ensure machines used meet all health and safety codes.