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Looking for High-Quality Mammography


WebMD Feature

April 3, 2000 (Chantilly, Va.) -- If ever there were a case for strength in numbers, mammography may be it, say breast cancer experts.

Women seeking mammograms can find the highest quality screenings from radiologists and doctors who have years of experience performing and reading mammograms on a daily basis. Also, those organizations that meet high professional standards of safety and quality should display a Food and Drug Administration certificate.

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I'm Too Young to Get Breast Cancer!

By Amy Engeler On September 2 of last year, Tomomi Arikawa left her office door open as she slipped out to her two o'clock sonogram appointment. She expected to return shortly — the imaging center was just across town from her office at ABC News, where she was a story editor for 20/20. At her gynecologist's urging, Tomomi was going to have a tender lump in her right breast checked out. The lump felt squishy, like a piece of Bubble Wrap, not like a hard kernel or a marble or any of the objects tumors...

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"I think it is important that women know that they are at a certified mammogram center, so they know that the machines are evaluated on an annual basis,'' says Barbara Brenner, Executive Director of Breast Cancer Action, a San Francisco-based advocacy group.

"And we always tell women under 50 that when they decide to have their first mammogram, they should schedule time right after the screening to sit down and ask questions. They should go to a place that will show them the pictures and answer questions about what can and cannot be seen.''

According to the American Cancer Society, women should go to the same facility every year, if possible, so that new and old mammograms can be compared. The society also recommends that women take copies of their mammograms with them if they move, so that doctors at their new facility can do the same.

Michael D. Towle writes regularly for WebMD on health and legal issues.

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