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Diagnostic Digital Mammography

ImageLike a screening mammogram, diagnostic digital mammography takes X-rays of the breast. Additional views of the area of concern are performed with different types of compression or magnification.

Learn more about mammography procedure preparation with our prep manual

Who Should Have a Diagnostic Mammogram?

Diagnostic mammography is recommended for women who are experiencing abnormal symptoms, such as:

  • A lump in the breast or under the arm
  • An area of thickening
  • Skin changes, such as redness, dimpling or thickening
  • Nipple changes
  • Nipple discharge
  • A change in breast size or shape

Diagnostic mammography can also be used for:

  • Women with a possible abnormality detected on their screening mammogram.
  • Women who have had a lumpectomy within the first seven years following radiation therapy.

When Should a Man Have a Mammogram?

Although breast cancer is rare in men, it does occur and usually presents with a palpable finding (lump). If you have felt a lump in your breast, you should contact your physician. He/she will examine the area, collect your family history and determine if a mammogram is needed. Consequently, diagnostic mammography, not screening mammography, is used to evaluate men who develop a breast lump. We offer the full complement of services, including:

Men who have a family history of breast cancer or are carriers of the BRCA genes should talk with their primary physicians regarding appropriate surveillance. If a suspicious finding is identified at the time of the study, you and your referring doctor will be informed. Download a PDF with more information about abnormal mammogram results. 

What Is CAD?

Northside Hospital Gwinnett and Northside Hospital Duluth also uses computer-aided detection (CAD) technology for all mammography exams. This state-of-the-art technology highlights areas on the mammogram that may be questionable or suspicious. By providing these highlights, CAD acts as a second pair of eyes for the radiologist.

What If I Have Breast Implants?

It is very important for women with silicone or saline breast implants to follow the guidelines as recommended by the American Cancer Society. Our highly skilled breast imaging technologists have been trained to carefully position and compress the implant safely to obtain optimal visualization and minimize the risk of damage to the implant. Due to the placement of an implant, additional imaging is required to visualize the entire breast.

What If I Have Small Breasts?

Mammograms can show changes in the breast tissue before a patient or physician can feel them, regardless of breast size. Our skilled breast technologists utilize special equipment to obtain the best possible imaging of each woman’s breast tissue, regardless of size or shape.

Who Interprets the Results and How Do I Get Them?

Our board-certified radiologists will analyze the images and send a signed report to your primary care or referring physician, who will discuss the results with you.

Northside Hospital Imaging has multiple convenient Atlanta-area locations including LawrencevilleHamilton Mill, Peachtree Corners and Duluth. If you would like to schedule an appointment, please call 678-312-3444.