Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Memorial Hermann on why this year — and every year — women should schedule a mammogram
It’s hard to find a break in your busy schedule. Your days are packed with work and family obligations and taking care of yourself often takes a back seat to everything else.
But when you prioritize your own health, you demonstrate a positive example for those around you to do the same.
Memorial Hermann Health System is committed to caring for the women in our community with 3-D mammography available at more than 15 breast care locations in Greater Houston.
Online scheduling and day, evening, and weekend appointments provide the convenience and flexibility to fit your schedule. With experienced healthcare providers and quality breast care services, you can take an important step for your health and well-being.
Mammograms save lives
Breast cancer is the most common cancer and second-most common cause of cancer death among women in Texas. That’s why making mammograms part of your annual wellness routine is a great way to be intentional about the preventive screenings that can help keep you well.
“One in eight women in the United States will develop breast cancer in her lifetime, and most have no family history,” says Michelle Agrons, MD, board-certified breast radiologist affiliated with Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center. “Women are used to being caregivers and caretakers, and sometimes put their own healthcare needs aside. This is a great way for women to take care of themselves.”
Dr. Agrons knows that anxiety can go along with the mammogram process for some women. “We want to minimize any fear or apprehension you may feel. After your screening, you can expect your results within a few days, so you don’t have to wait and worry,” she says.
Who needs a mammogram?
According to the American College of Radiology, women at average risk for breast cancer should have a screening mammogram each year beginning at age 40. If you have an increased risk of breast cancer, like family history, your doctor may recommend starting earlier or using a different timeline.
“Women with a significant family history of breast cancer should start earlier; some of these women begin annual screening mammograms as early as age 30,” Dr. Agrons says. “But remember that each woman is different and should have a conversation with her physician to determine the best plan for her.”
If you are experiencing new breast symptoms, including lumps, focal pain, skin changes, or nipple discharge, it is important to see your healthcare provider, even if you are not due for your annual mammogram.
“If you notice something new about your breasts, call your doctor quickly,” advises Dr. Agrons. “Even if you just had your annual mammogram and aren’t due for another year, you should be seen right away.”
What is a 3-D mammogram?
A 3-D mammogram, also called breast tomosynthesis, is an advanced imaging exam that combines several different breast images to create a three-dimensional view of the breast. This process allows physicians to better view the breast tissue and often reduces the need for follow-up imaging. 3-D mammography is available at more than 15 Memorial Hermann breast care locations.
“In the same amount of time as the older 2-D mammograms, we can now get hundreds of images with the 3-D technology,” says Dr. Agrons. “The 3-D views give us more information and we can make more informed decisions about what we are seeing. There is a slightly higher cancer detection rate with 3-D mammograms because we can distinguish problem areas more clearly.”
Trusted care from Memorial Hermann
Memorial Hermann's affiliated breast radiologists focus on providing patient-centered care in a warm, supportive environment. They are committed to utilizing the most up-to-date technology to give you trusted results.
- 3-D mammography available at all locations
- Curved plates, designed for improved comfort, available at some locations
Convenient scheduling, locations, and appointment options
- More than 15 locations throughout Greater Houston
- Early morning, daytime, evening, and weekend appointments available
- Online scheduling available
Mark it off your list
Making self-care and preventive screenings a priority is a way to help yourself — and those around you — focus on healthy living. Schedule your annual screening mammogram at Memorial Hermann.
To schedule or for more information, call 877-40-MAMMO or visit memorialhermann.org/breastcare.