Mammograms can be lifesaving for women, but if you are not sure what to expect, they can also be scary. In this video from Concord Imaging Center near San Antonio , you can learn exactly what to expect when you get a mammogram so that the experience is not intimidating.
Approximately one in eight women will get breast cancer in their lives, but early diagnosis through a mammogram can make breast cancer survivable. When you arrive at the imaging center, your mammographer will ask you questions about your breast health before performing the medical imaging exam. During the mammogram, your breasts will be compressed so that a clear image of the breast tissue can be taken. The compression only lasts for seconds, and while it may be uncomfortable, most women do not find it painful. Remember that your mammographer is committed to making the experience as easy for you as possible, so speak up if you have questions or are anxious about the procedure.
Medical imaging tests are used to both diagnose heart disease and monitor its progression. Your cardiologist may recommend imaging tests to determine what part of your heart is damaged, to evaluate how well your current treatment plan is working, and to see if your condition is getting worse. There are a number of different imaging tests that can be used in the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease, from X-rays to MRI scans in San Antonio . Here are some of the medical imaging exams you might undergo in your treatment for heart disease.
A chest X-ray is a painless test that uses a small amount of radiation to create an image of the organs and bones in your chest cavity, including your heart. Your doctor may order a chest X-ray if he or she suspects you have congenital heart disease, an enlarged heart, or blood vessel problems. A chest X-ray can also be used to identify calcium and plaque buildup in your blood vessels and heart that can increase your risk of having a heart attack. If you have a pacemaker or other heart device, then your doctor may also order an X-ray to make sure it is in the right place.
Cardiac CT Scan
A CT scan—or computed tomography—is used to create a 3D image of your heart. It is primarily used to find or monitor the presence of calcium deposits within plaque in the heart and arteries. It allows your doctor to diagnose atherosclerosis, which is a major risk factor for heart disease, before any symptoms begin, so that you can begin treatment early. CT scans can also be used to see if calcium deposits are increasing or if they are being adequately controlled by your current treatment plan. The test is painless, except for minor discomfort some patients experience when they receive an injection of contrast dye before the test.
Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, tests use a magnetic field and radio waves to create a detailed image of the structures of the heart. They can be used to determine how well the different components of the heart are functioning and to monitor the progression of heart disease. They can also be used to see if the treatments being used for your heart disease are effective.
Doctors recommend that most women begin having mammograms annually when they turn 40 and earlier or more often if they have certain risk factors. If your doctor refers you to an imaging center in San Antonio for your first mammogram, it is natural to have some nervousness about what to expect. Fortunately, most women find mammograms much easier than they have imaged them. If you are feeling nervous about your mammogram, here are some ways to cope with your anxiousness.
Sometimes, knowledge is the best way to overcome nervousness. When your doctor refers you for your mammogram, ask him or her to explain what to expect. The staff at your imaging center can also explain the process to you. By going into the mammogram with an understanding of the process, you can feel more confident about your appointment. If your anxiety revolves around the test results and the prospect of finding out that you have breast cancer or another health issue, ask your doctor to tell you exactly when you can expect to hear from him or her.
Talk to Your Friends
Sometimes, there is nothing as comforting as hearing someone you trust explain her own mammogram experiences to you. Most women have anxiety about getting their first mammograms and then discover that the test is fast and easy and only causes a small amount of discomfort if it causes any at all. You can even ask a friend to go with you to help keep your nerves under control.
Tell the Imaging Center Staff
It can be helpful to tell the imaging center staff that it is your first mammogram and that you are nervous about the experience. They will be more than willing to explain the entire process to you and to go slowly, telling you want to expect at each stage. You may be surprised how quickly the test is over when you feel comfortable and let go of your nervousness about the procedure.
Medical imaging is an incredibly valuable tool that physicians can use to diagnose and monitor diseases. Nuclear medicine , a form of imaging, gives doctors a real-time look at how various organs are working. If your physician refers you for nuclear medicine in San Antonio, watch this video to learn about the value of this form of medical imaging.
Nuclear medicine gives physicians a view of how various organs process normal substances and indicates areas of abnormal functioning. Through nuclear medicine imaging, your physician can diagnose a range of conditions, including many types of cancer, and evaluate the effectiveness of any treatment you are currently undergoing. This information helps him or her make an informed decision about your treatment plan to give you the best possible care.
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