Breast screenings

Mammograms and breast ultrasounds are important screenings for early detection of breast cancer, as well as other breast conditions. 

How are they different? 

A mammogram is an X-ray picture of the breast. Based on your age, or you if have certain risk factors, your women’s health care provider will likely recommend an annual mammogram.

A breast ultrasound uses sound waves to create images of your breast tissue. If abnormalities are detected during your mammogram, a breast ultrasound is often the next step that allows your doctor and radiologist to evaluate a concerning area in more detail. 

When should I begin mammogram screening?

Recommendations for what age women should begin mammogram screening vary between 40 and 50 years old depending on a variety of risk factors. The providers at the St. Charles Center for Women’s Health will discuss with you the benefits, risks and limitations of mammograms and together we’ll decide what’s best for your health. Balancing the benefits of screening with the limitations and risks is a key part of deciding when to begin mammograms and how often to repeat them.