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What is a mammogram?

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Mammography uses special X-ray images to detect abnormal growths or changes in the breast tissue.

Using a digital X-ray machine made especially for breast tissue, a technician compresses the breast and takes pictures from at least two different angles, creating a set of images for each of your breasts. This set of images is called a mammogram. Breast tissue appears white and opaque and fatty tissue appears darker and translucent.

In a screening mammogram, the breast is X-rayed from top to bottom and from side to side. A diagnostic mammogram focuses in on a particular lump or area of abnormal tissue.

From: Breast Cancer and Mammograms WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCE: The American Cancer Society. Journal of the American Medical Association.

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on December 17, 2017

SOURCE: The American Cancer Society. Journal of the American Medical Association.

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on December 17, 2017

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Why do you need a mammogram?

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