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Cancer: Breast Message Board
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:30 PM   #1
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Fibrocystic breast disease - which is better mammo or ultrasound?

Hi.

I'm a 37 yr old mom of two (4 yr and 19 mo). Just went to the ob/gyn on Tuesday. Dr. ordered baseline mammogram since breasts have changed (fibrocystic changes) since pregnancies. I think he ordered it more for my peace of mind. Anyway, I've read that if you have fibrocystic breasts that mammogram isn't the best - that ultrasound is better. Anyone else heard this? The imaging center explained that they do a mammogram first and if they find anything, then they do an ultrasound of the suspicous area.
I had a breast ultrasound last Nov. because I found a lump - it ended up being a lymph node.

My first mammo is scheduled for July 19. Any input from those with experience would be appreciated.

Thanks.

 
Old 06-24-2005, 04:36 PM   #2
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Re: Fibrocystic breast disease - which is better mammo or ultrasound?

Ultrasound has excellent contrast resolution. This means, for example, that an area of fluid (cyst) and an area of normal breast tissue are easy to differentiate on an ultrasound image. However, ultrasound does not have good spatial resolution like mammography, and can't provide as much detail as a mammogram image. Ultrasound is also unable to image microcalcifications, tiny calcium deposits that are often the first indication of breast cancer. Mammography, on the other hand, is excellent at imaging calcifications. In my opinion, it's best to have the mammograms regularly and then US for follow up, in necessary cases.

 
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Old 07-01-2005, 05:35 PM   #3
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Re: Fibrocystic breast disease - which is better mammo or ultrasound?

Just one rad of radiation from a mammogram increases breast cancer risk one percent and is the equivalent of one year's natural aging. If a woman has yearly mammograms from age 55 to age 75, she will receive a minimum of 20 rads of radiation. For comparison, women who survived the atomic bomb blasts in Hiroshima or Nagasaki absorbed 35 rads. Though one large dose of radiation can be more harmful than many small doses, it's important to remember that damage from radiation is cumulative. It builds up!
I had lumpy breasts at one point in my life. I went to a general practitioner. He said, "don't call it 'disease.' It's a fibrocystic breast "condition" and he left them alone. The lumps disappeared at menopause.
Suzanne Somers And her sister had faithful yearly mammos and both came down with cancer. Suzanne, after doing much research, discovered that repeat mammos were part of 'treatment' and she refused any more xrays. I'm not saying that her treatment is right; all I'm saying is she looks and feels fantastic. My best friend had one mammogram at 46; it was clear. Then at 48 she was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer then died at 50 from the "treatment" she received. I think she must have had every known side effect from each pill, each treatment, each surgery she got. In and out of hospitals the last 5 months of her "life." I will Never have a mammogram, I"m not worried in the least and I believe it's just a big con job to pay for the machines. My vitamin intake is obscene in it's proportions and expense. If I were to get breast cancer I'd have a lumpectomy, period. I advise every woman to do extensive studying on the latest findings regarding lumpectomies versus radical surgery. I'm sorry if I've offended anyone.
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Old 07-03-2005, 11:27 PM   #4
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dogtired HB User
Re: Fibrocystic breast disease - which is better mammo or ultrasound?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smithn
Ultrasound has excellent contrast resolution. This means, for example, that an area of fluid (cyst) and an area of normal breast tissue are easy to differentiate on an ultrasound image. However, ultrasound does not have good spatial resolution like mammography, and can't provide as much detail as a mammogram image. Ultrasound is also unable to image microcalcifications, tiny calcium deposits that are often the first indication of breast cancer. Mammography, on the other hand, is excellent at imaging calcifications. In my opinion, it's best to have the mammograms regularly and then US for follow up, in necessary cases.
Well said smithn..ultrasound is NOT a screening procedure...ultrasound is
a targeted procedure meaning if they see a nodule on the mammogram they
will follow up with ultrasound to determine if the nodule is cystic,solid or a
lymph node.Ultrasound alone is good for palpable lumps or women with a
breast discharge.. it is excellent for viewing ducts...but it doesn't replace
a mammogram for catching those microcalcs as smithn said.

 
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