Due for a Screening? Schedule Your Mammogram Today
In the United States, one in eight women will develop breast cancer. Put another way, every two minutes, one American woman gets this diagnosis. That’s when timing really counts. Because the sooner breast cancer is found, the better the chance for successful treatment. And that’s why mammograms are so important.
Getting regular mammograms – a low-dose X-ray – is a key step in breast cancer detection. “Routine mammograms help to detect breast cancer at an earlier stage, when it is smaller and more localized,” says Smita Sonti, M.D., who practices family medicine at Martin’s Point.
This is especially true for those women age 50 and 70, when the benefits are highest. Mammography images allow doctors to detect changes in tissue like lumps, tumors and tiny calcium deposits that can’t be found with manual exams.
Know your screening routine
Because breast cancer risk increases with age, the recommendations for getting mammograms are different for women of different ages. Not all experts agree on when to start, but here are three common scenarios:
By age 40: Start annual mammograms.
Age 45: Start annual mammograms.
Age 50: Start mammograms every two years.
Know your options
Three-dimensional imaging is a relatively new alternative. This technology provides additional detail that can lead to more accurate evaluations. Evidence shows that 3-D mammography:
- Detects 20-65% more invasive breast cancers than 2-D mammography.
- Results in 40% fewer call backs.
How to keep it on your radar
It’s easy to let the months slip by and forget to schedule. Try using an important date in your life to help you stay on track. “Many of my patients use their birthday as a reminder to schedule this important screening exam,” says Dr. Sonti.
Or just call today!
Get this important screening on your calendar today. Then reach out to a friend, sister or cousin and remind her to do the same – because early detection saves live.
Martin’s Point offers both 3-D and 2-D breast imaging at two Maine locations:
- Brunswick at 74 Baribeau Drive (207-798-4050)
- Portland at 331 Veranda St. (207-828-2402)
Check with your insurance carrier to see if they cover 3-D mammography before you make an appointment.