resources about breast cancer and mammography

mammography saves lives!

User-friendly site that highlights the benefits of Mammography in women over 40 - developed by the American College of Radiology

study on women 40-49 and breast cancer

Link to a Landmark Study Confirming that Mammography Lowers Breast Cancer Death Rate in Women 40-49

American cancer society breast cancer screening guidelines

american college of radiology mammography guidelines

american society of breast surgeons guidelines


Questions about Mammograms?

Every day we are asked questions about Mammograms.  This has become more prevalent in light of controversial recommendations to change Screening Mammogram protocols.  Listed below are our answers to some of the more common questions we receive, along with links to resources for further research on Mammography and Breast Cancer.

Q.             When should I start having Mammograms?

A.              Our recommendations follow the American Cancer Society guidelines.  Women should have their first Screening Mammogram starting at age 40.  However, if you are at a higher risk for Breast Cancer (i.e.- you have a mother, sister or daughter with a history of Breast Cancer, or are known to be BRCA1 or BRCA2 genetically positive) your physician may want you to start having Mammograms earlier than age 40.  This is a good topic of discussion for you and your primary care physician. 


Q.             How often should I have a Screening Mammogram?

A.              Again, our recommendations follow the American Cancer Society.  If you are having no symptoms or problems with your breasts, then you should have a Screening Mammogram every twelve months. 

If you find a problem or develop potential symptoms of Breast Cancer, you should speak with your primary care physician immediately. 


Q.             When should stop having Mammograms?

A.              We do not recommend stopping Mammograms at any specific age.  There are potential benefits to Screening Mammography as long as a woman is in good health, expects to live 5 to 10 years, and would seek treatment if cancer is found. 


Q.             Why can’t I wear deodorant or powder when having a Mammogram?

A.              We ask women not to wear deodorant or powder on the day of their Mammogram because many deodorants and body powders contain Aluminum.  When the Mammogram is viewed by our Radiologist, the Aluminum looks very similar to calcifications in the breast.  When interpreting Mammograms, our Radiologists want to be able to identify true calcifications, which can be artificially created by the use of deodorants.

In our facility changing rooms, we always provide deodorant for use following your Mammogram.  Also, if you prefer, you may bring your deodorant with you to apply after you are done. 


Q.             What is the difference between a Screening Mammogram and a Diagnostic Mammogram?

A.              A Screening Mammogram is a study that is performed on women who are asymptomatic (i.e.- they have no history of Breast Cancer (within the past 5 to 7 years), are having no symptoms with their breasts such as: pain, swelling, a lump, discharge, etc.)

A Diagnostic Mammogram is a study that is performed on women who are having symptoms or problems with their breasts (see list above), have a recent history of Breast Cancer, or have an area in their breast that the Radiologist would like to follow closely to make sure that an issue does not develop. 


Q.             What is the difference between Digital Mammography and film-based Mammography?

A.              Digital Mammography is the latest technological advance in the field of Mammography and has become the new standard of care for women.  Digital Mammography captures images digitally and transfers them to a computer workstation to be read.  Film-based Mammography uses film to capture the images, and then the images are read directly from the film.  

The comparison is very similar to the differences between using a digital camera and a film-based camera.  When using a digital camera, you are able to zoom in on the image, make the picture a little lighter or darker, and even make markings on the image.  The same is true for Digital Mammography. Studies have shown that Digital Mammography is beneficial for women who are younger or have denser breasts. 

Pinehurst Radiology was the first in Moore County to make the switch to Digital Mammography in May 2007.  We are proud to be the Sandhills leader in Mammography!




  Pinehurst Radiology
30 Memorial Drive
Pinehurst, NC 28374

910-295-4400 - phone
910-295-2810 - fax