Mammograms are breast cancer screenings that utilize a low dose of radiation to create an accurate image of your breasts’ internal make-up. While physical exams can detect abnormalities, a mammogram is the best tool for early detection of breast cancer. Over 232,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year and chances of survival and recovery rise dramatically with early detection. Mammography can detect a malignant growth long before it can be felt. For this reason alone, any woman over the age of 40 should have a mammogram once a year. While there is some discomfort associated with the exam itself (due to compression of the breast), the information gleaned is vital to staying healthy and living an active life. The radiation involved in the test is minimal and doesn’t pose a serious health risk. Contact us today for more information.
Though the term biopsy may sound distressing, it can be a very practical diagnostic for evaluating an abnormal lump or mass in your breast. The most common result of a biopsy is calcifications, which in many cases are benign. However, any abnormal result may indicate the early stages of breast cancer. Biopsies are very safe, but some discomfort can arise after the procedure. The most common side effects are bruising, swelling, and irritation of the affected breast. Most biopsies are fairly noninvasive and are typically performed by first pinpointing the abnormal tissue through ultrasound or mammography. After applying a local numbing agent, a small needle will be inserted to collect a cell sample of the mass. This small piece of tissue will then be analyzed for any malignancies.
Surgical biopsies are a more invasive procedure, but are also more accurate. This technique removes a larger portion of the abnormal mass. The patient is given a sedative and local anesthetic during this procedure, so no discomfort is felt. If you’ve felt an unfamiliar mass during your self-exam, we encourage you to contact us for an appointment. We can diagnose the issue, ensure your health, and give you peace of mind.
At Surgery Group LA, we utilize the latest ultrasonography and breast MRI technology to diagnose and treat breast cancer. Ultrasonography uses high-frequency waves to create a digital image of your breast’s interior.
This technique is especially useful in examining a lump and determining if it is filled with fluid or is a solid mass. Ultrasonography can also be used with a diagnostic mammogram to examine a specific area of the breast and analyze any abnormalities found within the tissue.
Breast MRI is another technique we use to create cross-sectional images of the breast. This diagnostic can show hard-to-spot lesions that aren’t already picked up by ultrasound or mammography exams.
Women who have an increased risk of breast cancer may elect to have this additional diagnostic. The process is nearly painless and can give an accurate idea of your breasts’ health. Find out more about our digital imaging diagnostics by contacting us today.
More importantly, our team of world-renowned surgeons have saved countless lives, and have enabled countless more to live healthy, happy lives.