My baseline mammogram screening was performed in 1999. I was 43 years old at the time, 3 years past when it is suggested that a baseline scan be performed. It is recommended that a mammogram screening be performed each year after the age of 40. My second mammogram screening was performed today. I offer no excuse for my lack of regular mammograms. From this day on, though, I will make a yearly mammogram screening a priority in my life. Shucks, a yearly mammogram might just be the ticket to my having a long life.
My mammogram was scheduled for 8:30 this morning at our local hospital. I arrived at the hospital at 8:00 AM and registered in the Outpatient Department. From there I walked around the corner and into the Screening Center. Prior to the mammogram I had an ultrasonic heel scan performed, at no charge. The heel scan is a screening test that assesses fracture risk. The heel scan took less than 5 minutes. I placed my right foot on top of a small machine and two little sensors on either side of my heel pressed against my heel and read the bone density. I didn’t feel the pressure against my heel; I felt no pain at all. The results of my heel scan indicate that I have normal bones; therefore, my fracture risk must be low.
After the heel scan I was asked to undress from the waist up and put on a blouse-like gown, opened to the front. Then I headed into the next room and saw the boob squishing machine.
The radiologist placed markers on each nipple, and the screening began. Both front and side images of each breast were taken (two pictures of each breast). Overall, it was pretty easy. I experienced some discomfort from my breasts being compressed and stretched; however, it didn’t hurt. It wasn’t bad at all. I got dressed, remembering to remove the nipple markers (OUCH!). I was on my way back home by 8:50 AM. Now I just have to wait for the results.