The numbers of breast cancer patients in India is increasing by the day. Over 8.8 lac deaths by 2020 are predicted due to the serious disease, reports Indian Council of Medical Research. Currently, breast cancer accounts for 27% of all cancers in women in India.
What’s more disturbing is even though there is an increased awareness about it, not a lot of women are open to getting themselves tested and reasons for this attitude are far too many, one of them being “the fear of experiencing pain during mammogram screening”.
What is mammography?
It is a specific kind of breast imaging that makes use of low doses of X-rays to detect cancer early, especially when no symptoms are visible. Mammography is a non-invasive medical test that can expose cysts, tumours and calcifications growing inside the breasts.
According to American Cancer Society, every woman above the age of 40 should undergo a mammogram screen on an annual basis. Finding breast cancer early can reduce the risk of dying from the disease by 25-30%.
What does a mammography equipment look like?
The mammography unit is a rectangular box consisting the tube in which X-rays are produced. Attached to the unit is the panel that holds one breast at a time while it is compressed by the compression device situated near it.
How is a mammogram done?
Mammography is a fast procedure and takes about 20 minutes. You will be asked to remove your clothes and jewellery and get into a hospital gown. One of your breasts will be placed on the panel and compressed to get a clear view of the breast tissue. The process is repeated for the other breast.
Don’t wear a deodorant before going for the test as that will hinder the test result. Also, if you are above the age of 50 or have dense breasts, get a digital mammography as this will enable the doctor to look at your breasts more closely.
What happens next?
The radiologist will review the images and send a signed copy of your report to a referring physician. He or she will advise on the basis of your test results. Read up on the types of breast cancer and possible treatments here.
Does mammography hurt?
Honestly, that varies from woman to woman.
Since the breasts are compressed for a short span to see the tissues properly, some women may experience slight pain or discomfort. This is completely normal. Then there are women who may feel more pain than others.
Once you find a facility you have confidence in and are comfortable with, stick to it so that your mammography results can be compared with each year.
Who should avoid mammography?
Pregnant women should avoid undergoing a screening as the radiation can affect the foetus and cause developmental problems to the baby.
Risks of a mammogram screening
1) Exposure to radiation is a concern for some. However, the amount of radiation used in a mammography is too small to associate it with any risk when compared with the preventive benefits reaped from it.
2) There are five to fifteen percent cases of mammograms in which the tests are not conclusive and additional mammograms or ultrasounds are required.
Buy mammogram screening vouchers from Brexa
Mammography is an expensive procedure and not every woman can afford to undergo it. At Brexa, it is our endeavour to not only spread awareness about breast cancer but also ensure women are taking the right precautions to detect the disease early.
That is why we offer vouchers at a discounted rate of INR 1,500. This can even be gifted and redeemed at our nearest lab. Here’s how it works:
- Purchase a mammogram screening voucher from our website.
- The voucher will be delivered to your “My Purchases” page.
- Print, show an electronic copy or download the voucher to your Brexa app by typing in the voucher code.
- Book an appointment at our nearest lab.
- Once the test is done, our in-house physicians will review the report and add their advice.
- The report will finally be uploaded to your Brexa account which you can view from the app. You are also free to collect a hard copy of the report from the lab.
What are you waiting for? ORDER TODAY.