Mammography is a safe, low dose x-ray of the inside of your breast. Molokai General Hospital’s Radiology Department uses mammogram to help diagnose lumps or other abnormalities found during a breast exam and can show changes too small to feel by touch. 

Before getting Mammography

Inform your doctor or Mammography technologist if you have or had any of the following (as these may affect test results):

  • Any previous breast surgery
  • Breast implants
  • Large moles

Try to schedule your mammogram for the week after your period, when your breasts are less tender.

On the day of your Mammography

  • Wear a two-piece outfit, since you’ll be undressing from the waist up.
  • Don’t use deodorant, talcum powder, or cream on your breasts or underarms. These can interfere with test results.
  • During the Mammography, your breast is gently flattened between two plastic plates. This ensures that all breast tissue can be seen.  You may feel some discomfort, but it lasts just a few moments.
  • An x-ray machine sends a tiny amount of radiation through your breast to create an image. Two or more views may be taken of each breast to provide a complete picture.

Your health care provider will discuss the test results with you.  Be sure to ask any questions you have about the test or results.

Guidelines for having regular Mammograms

  • Have your first mammogram by age 40
  • After have a mammogram every year
  • If you are at higher risk for breast cancer, you may need to start having yearly mammograms earlier