At the Breast Health Center, under the Banner University Women's Institute we offer specialized care services in the Phoenix area that include:
- Stereotactic breast biopsy (mammotome)
- Ultrasound guided biopsy
- Sentinel lymph node biopsy
- Cyst aspiration
- Pre-operative needle localization
We keep you and your family informed while you are in our care at the Breast Health Center. The following information is just a sample of all that our team of specialized care providers offers in terms of keeping you informed and involved throughout the process of your care.
What is Mammography?
Mammography is a series of X-rays that shows images of the soft tissues of the breast. It is a valuable procedure that can detect breast cancer early, as much as two years before a lump can be felt by touch.
Mammography is a quick and generally painless test that usually takes less than 15 minutes, depending on the number of individual X-ray views required. The X-rays themselves take only a few seconds, but extra time is needed to position your breast and body correctly for each separate X-ray view.
It is not uncommon to find an abnormality on a mammogram that requires additional imaging of the area in question, as well as an ultrasound to visualize the abnormal area. Most abnormalities found during a mammography are not cancer.
Why Are Mammograms Performed?
Mammograms aid in screening for breast cancer in women with or without symptoms. Symptoms of breast cancer may include a lump or thickening in the breast, nipple discharge, or dimpling of the skin on one area of the breast. If a suspected abnormality is found, it may be removed for examination under a microscope (biopsy).
Many small tumors are seen on a mammogram before they can be physically felt by a woman or her health care professional.
The University of Arizona, in coordination with Banner – University Medicine, conducts a variety of research studies and clinical trials to support a commitment to improving patient care. As a patient at Banner – University Medical Center, you may be eligible to participate, meaning you’ll have access to new treatments which may not yet be available to the public.
The American Cancer Society recommends that women with an average risk of breast cancer begin mammography screening at the age of 45. Women should speak to their physician to determine the best age to begin breast cancer screening, especially if there are known risk factors.
Mammograms do not prevent breast cancer or reduce a woman's risk of developing cancer outright. However, regular mammograms can reduce a woman's chances of dying from breast cancer by detecting a cancer when it is more easily treated.