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What to Expect from a Mammogram

As we wrap up Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we want to take a moment to stress the importance of getting a mammogram. Not only should this be a thought during the month of October, but all year long. In the Columbus region, any woman can walk into an Ohio Health location and get a mammogram with no appointment. Check out our video of Polly walking in to Ohio Health’s Westerville location and getting her mammogram. If you’re coming up on your 40th birthday, you may have questions about mammograms; here is a quick list of things to remember.

What is a mammogram?

A mammogram is a screening tool for breast cancer. By looking closely at the breast tissue, healthcare providers can determine if more tests are needed. Mammograms can reveal nearly 90 percent of breast cancers years before a lump can be felt.

Who needs a mammogram?

Mammograms are recommended for any woman age 40 and over. A person under the age of 40 may also want to get a mammogram if there is any fear of abnormality or higher risk of cancer in the breasts. It is recommended that women over age 40 receive one mammogram a year.

Will it Hurt?

During a mammogram, you breast is positioned on a machine for x-rays. The machine has two plates which will compress your breast flat to get pictures of the tissue. The compression is uncomfortable for some but is brief. Your mammographer will do their best to place you in the most comfortable position for your breast size.

What Comes Next?

Your results are typically available within two or three days but expect results to take around 10 days. If you have abnormal results, you will receive a call from your healthcare provider to go over what’s been found and provide you with next steps.

Keep yourself accountable for your health and fit a mammogram into your busy schedule. With the ability to make an appointment or just walk in, you have multiple options to get yourself checked out.