Mammograms Save Lives

Is It Time to Schedule Your First Mammogram?

As you age, your risk of breast cancer increases. Your primary care provider or gynecologist will then suggest you schedule your first mammogram.

Mammograms are powerful diagnostic tools that allow us to diagnose breast cancer before you develop any palpable lumps or develop other symptoms. 

Woman thinking about when to schedule her first mammogram - Maiden Lane Medical, NYC

When should I have my first mammogram?

Depending on which resource you check, women should start having mammograms between the ages of 40-50. We like to put your health first and recommend that women have their first mammogram when they turn 40. 

If you have an increased risk of breast cancer, for example, if your mother or grandmother had breast cancer or if you’ve had breast cancer before, your physician might recommend starting routine mammogram screening earlier or more frequently.

How do I schedule a mammogram?

Scheduling your mammogram is easy. You simply call our office or use our online scheduling tool to book your mammogram appointment at your convenience. If you have any questions about the procedure, our knowledgeable office staff can help.

How often do I need to have a mammogram?

We suggest that women have annual mammograms between the ages of 40-54. From the age of 55, you should have mammograms every other year until you and your doctor determine that it isn’t necessary. 

How should I prepare for a mammogram?

You only need to make a few minor changes to your morning routine. Simply, don’t put deodorant, perfume, lotion, or powder on your breasts, chest, or underarms. Deodorant and other personal care products can interfere with your mammogram results, leading to additional testing, including diagnostic mammograms and biopsies

You don’t need to fast and can eat and drink normally before your appointment. You can also take any prescriptions or over-the-counter you use regularly. You might also want to take a couple of ibuprofen approximately 30 minutes before your appointment to reduce any discomfort. 

You might also want to wear a shirt with a skirt or pants. You’ll need to take your top and bra off for your mammogram and wear a short gown that opens in the front to maintain your modesty during the test. 

Women wearing hijab in the age range for a mammogram screening - Maiden Lane Medical

How long does it take to get mammogram results?

Here at Maiden Lane Medical, we offer in-office mammograms and have a radiologist on staff who can read your mammogram. We typically get your results more quickly than if you went to an outside radiology service. 

What happens if my results are abnormal?

If we find any signs of abnormal tissue, we call you to schedule a follow-up appointment to discuss the next steps. Depending on your results, we might schedule a diagnostic mammogram to get more detailed images. Alternatively, we might suggest a biopsy. A biopsy is a simple, minimally invasive procedure to collect a sample of cells for lab testing. We typically use a needle aspiration procedure to collect a sample from a suspected tumor in your breast. 

If you have any questions about mammograms or are ready to schedule your mammogram, call our office or make an appointment online.

Medically Reviewed By

Dena Harris, MD
Board Certified Gynecologist