Move over mammograms there’s a new sheriff in town, make that two new sheriffs for that matter. For the longest time, mammograms have been the #1 way to prevent and detect breast cancer. However, patients forget about two other alternatives: a breast MRI, and a breast ultrasound. These two procedures have their pros and cons, let’s explore them to find out more about these unique breast exams.
A breast MRI is exactly what it sounds like. When getting a scan for a breast MRI you go through the same procedure as any other MRI. The most common uses of a breast MRI are to screen women at a high risk for cancer, determining the extent of cancer after a new diagnosis, and evaluating breast implants. A breast MRI is noninvasive and poses no risk to the patient if proper safety guidelines are followed.
You probably thought ultrasounds were just used for pregnancies. Well think again! A breast ultrasound is a noninvasive procedure, and is performed the same way an ultrasound during a pregnancy is done. A breast ultrasound is commonly used for determining if there if a breast abnormality. Little do most patients know, breast ultrasound also can be used to screen for breast cancer.
So what’s the main difference between the two?
The main difference between a breast MRI and a breast ultrasound is that they can be used for detecting breast cancer for unique types of patients. Breast ultrasounds are most suitable for patients who may be claustrophobic, and cannot undergo an MRI. As well as this, they can be used to detect severe abnormalities in the breast, and also for pregnant patients who don’t want x-rays, which is required for a mammogram. Breast MRI’s are most sufficient for patients who don’t want to feel uncomfortable during their breast exams, mammograms are known for creating discomfort during the examination. Also, breast MRI’s are the best way to determine if breast implants have ruptured in the body.
Whatever procedure you choose to evaluate your breast health, whether it’s a mammogram, a breast MRI, or ultrasound, at Advanced Imaging Centers we can help. Make your appointment today for your breast health.