Before a diagnostic 3D mammogram, it is important to avoid using deodorants, lotions, or powders on the day of your procedure since these can sometimes block the image of the X-ray. If you are experiencing any symptoms which require evaluation with diagnostic mammography, please inform us at the time of scheduling so that appropriate time is given for this exam and consultation with the radiologist. Always be sure to inform your technologist if you are having any new breast symptoms on the day of your exam.
A 3D mammogram is performed much like traditional 2D digital mammography. During a 3D mammogram, a technologist trained in mammography uses an X-ray machine to obtain images of the breast. The technologist will position each breast on a plate within the machine to include as much of the breast tissue as possible. Compression may be applied to thin the breast tissue in order to minimize the dose of radiation to the breast. It also prevents blurring of the image and provides improved detail.
With the breast in place, the X-ray arm sweeps over the breast, taking multiple images in a matter of seconds. These digital images are sent to a computer that creates a three-dimensional rendering of the breast, providing greater visibility for the radiologist.
After a diagnostic 3D mammogram, the radiologist will immediately evaluate the images and consult with you, discussing the results and giving recommendations for follow-up. During this consultation, you have the opportunity to discuss any issues regarding your breast health and ask any questions. A written copy of the results is provided. If a biopsy is recommended, it will be scheduled as soon as possible after the diagnostic evaluation.