What Is A Mammogram?

Mammograms – special X-Ray studies of breast tissue – help diagnose breast abnormalities. Radiologists use two types of mammograms to check breast health: screening mammograms and diagnostic mammograms.

For women without symptoms, screening mammograms consist of two views of each breast. ‘True’ Digital Mammography is the platform of the future providing unparalleled precision and reliable visualization across the entire breast.

Digital systems allow precision imaging of virtually any woman in a single exposure or view.
Reduced radiation exposure is appreciated when compared to analog mammography systems. All Digital studies utilize Computer Aided Detection (CAD). Studies have suggested that CAD may increase early detection of breast cancer by 20%. For women with symptoms or suspicious findings on a screening study, a diagnostic mammogram is required. Diagnostic studies involve specialized mammographic views of breast tissue.

Further Information


You must inform the technologist if you are, or think you might be, pregnant.

No lotions, powders, deodorant or perfume in the breast or underarm area.


Why Have a Mammogram?

One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime. The American Cancer Society (ACS) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) have developed mammography guidelines to assist in the early detection of breast cancer. Modern technology aids in the early detection of breast cancer, giving today’s women the best chance ever of surviving breast cancer.

If diagnosed in the earliest stage, nearly 100% of breast cancer patients survive with appropriate treatment. Both the ACS and the ACR recommend low-dose mammography as the diagnostic tool of choice for detecting cancers too small to be felt. Although approximately 15% of breast cancers may not be detected through mammography, mammography remains the most effective tool in the early detection of breast cancer.

The federal government requires every mammography facility to mail a report directly to the patient. The report is written in layperson’s language and will be mailed within 30 days of your screening mammogram. If the radiologist detects any areas of concern, a representative from PENRAD Imaging will contact you and your physician of record to schedule additional diagnostic studies.

Technologists at PENRAD Imaging are American Registry of Radiographic  Technologists (ARRT) certified and have additional specialized certification in mammography. Our mammography equipment is certified by the FDA and is accredited by the American College of Radiology.

At PENRAD Imaging, your mammogram is always performed by certified technologists on accredited and licensed equipment, with interpretation provided by Board Certified Radiologists.

Regular Self-Examination

Although mammograms are the best single tool in detecting breast cancer, they do not find all breast cancers. Women should perform breast self-examinations on a regular basis. An annual breast examination by a medical provider is also recommended.


When Cancerous Growth Occurs, the Breast May Demonstrate:


  • A lump – usually single, firm and most often painless
  • Inverted nipple – in a previously normal breast
  • Skin swelling – a portion of the skin on the breast has the appearance of an orange peel
  • Superficial veins – the skin surface veins on one breast become more prominent than on the other
  • Skin dimpling – a depression occurs in a localized area of the breast surface

Risk Factors

  • Gender
  • Age
  • Personal or family history of breast cancer
  • No children, or a first child delivered after the age of 30
  • Diagnosis of ductal or lobular carcinoma “in situ”
  • Diagnosis of ovarian, colon, or endometrial cancer

What to Expect

Exam Preparation

To prepare for your mammogram, dress in a comfortable, two-piece outfit.

You will be asked to undress from the waist up.

Do not apply powders, deodorants or creams on your underarms or breasts as these can interfere with a clear mammogram.

Do not schedule your mammogram for the week before your period if your breasts are usually tender during this time. The best time for a mammogram is one week following your period.

During the Exam

Female technologists perform every mammogram at PENRAD Women’s Imaging Center. The breast will be positioned on state-of-the-art equipment utilizing automated compression.

During the brief periods of compression, the technologist will ask you to stay very still to ensure clear images.

Your digital images will be reviewed by the technologist for quality and correct positioning prior to the end of the exam.

After the Exam

A board certified radiologist will interpret your mammogram and provide a formal report for your permanent medical record.

The formal exam results will be sent to you and/or referring healthcare provider, who will in turn discuss the results with you.

Feel free to contact our facility or check with your healthcare provider for additional information.



Mammography Exams are available at these locations:

PENRAD @ Audubon Medical Campus
3050 N. Circle Drive
Colorado Springs, CO 80909

PENRAD @ Broadmoor Area Centura Neighborhood Health Center
1263 Lake Plaza Drive, #100
Colorado Springs, CO 80906

PENRAD @ Sisters Grove Pavilion (Breast 3-D Tomosynthesis at this location only)
6011 Woodmen Road, #10
Colorado Springs, CO 80923

PENRAD @ Tri-Lakes Health Pavilion
17230 Jackson Creek Parkway, #160
Monument, CO 80132

To request an appointment, click here or call (719) 785-9000 option 1



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