I am having my first mammogram tomorrow morning. Any tips on what do before. I hear you can shower but no deodorant or perfume. Why is that? I am kind of nervous but I am 41 and I need to take care of myself and make sure all is good to go.
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Hi! I have the same question. I am 17 years old and my right breast is swollen with lumps that cause pain to the touch. My pediatrician immediately scheduled a mammogram this Friday. I'm super nervous. If I am already sensitive from my lumps with just a touch, how can I lessen the pain during the testing?
By Melanie Jackson 03/15/2009
Lynn's right, heart disease is the #1 killer of women, so please don't forget to discuss your risks with your doctor.
There was a lump on my aunt's breast; it was removed, and she was fine. She developed heart disease, and that's what killed her.
By Nancy in NC 03/12/2009
Hi, Rose, The best tip I can suggest is to take your regular pain med (Tylenol, Advil, Aleve) an hour before your appointment. The best of these would be an anti-inflammatory like Advil or Aleve. Good luck, Nancy in NC
By Beth 03/10/2009
I am 47 and I have had an annual mammogram for 16 years. The little bit of discomfort is so much more tolerable than treatment for breast cancer. If you have lost a mother/grandmother/sister you should start having mammograms 10 years before the age of the family member was diagnosed. Say my mother was diagnosed at 38 so I should have started at 28. You should be so proud of yourself for making sure you are healthy. I never want my son to lose his mother to breast cancer as I did.
By Kim Churchman 03/10/2009
PS. The aluminum chlorohydrate in deodorants does not ever cause cancer - that's one of the oldest urban legends and because we don't yet have a cancer cure, it persists.
By Patricia Taylor03/10/2009
I don't know about perfume, but most deodorants have aluminum oxide in them, which is a metal, and that messes up the film. Causes a fuzzy view or flashes of light that could even be misdiagnosed. I read something about it some years ago. So, perfume may have something in it that also may cause problems with the pictures.
It has also been determined that that same aluminum oxide may also cause cancer.
By Beth 03/10/2009
And lets not forget, ladies, that heart disease kills ten times more women than cancer does! Worry more about what is likely to kill you than what you are afraid will kill you!
By Louise B. 03/10/2009
Relax, nothing to them. I have had several -- whole procedure takes about 15 minutes, most of which is chatting with the technician about medical history. One of the best women who has taken the mammogram for me keeps chatting about the weather, movies, etc, and this takes your mind off things. I wouldn't say there is pain -- discomfort certainly-- but less than stubbng your toe or bumping your elbow on something.
I have never been told about the perfume or deodorant, so I wouldn't worry about that, unless you are given those instructions.
By Melanie Jackson 03/08/2009
I had mine done just last year, and it was agonizing for me. Not only did it hurt my shoulders (I have fibromyalgia), but my breasts hurt for a week afterward.
Maybe it's because I was slim, and don't have large breasts. And it wasn't just me, either; Mom had hers done by another exam clinic, and the pain was so bad that they had to abort the test.
Me, I'm only going to get mine done every 5 years, as they do in Europe. There's increasing evidence (being shouted down by the AMA of course) that breast tissue absorbs and retains mammogram radiation. Meaning, it's not safe to have them done every year. Even my gynocologist got breast cancer!
People get so wrapped up in mammograms that they forget another very important part of breast health: Breast self-exams. Don't just ignore your breasts between mammograms, because many times it's women themselves who discover lumps, themselves.
By Cathy 03/07/2009
I've had several, and it's nothing to worry about at all. It goes very quickly and I have big 'bazzooms' (; and there was never what I would call any pain. Just congratulate yourself for keeping up on your health. After having my young, wonderful boss die at age 39 from breast cancer that was detected too late, I would encourage every woman to PLEASE keep up on these things. Its not a bad idea to schedule yearly routine exams, pap smears, and mammograms around your birthday. That way it's pretty easy to remember. I wish you the very best of health!
By Marjorie C. Woodworth 03/07/2009
The deodorant or perfume will show up on the x-ray film.
By Judi 03/06/2009
There's no need to worry about pain. It's not a position you'd want to be in all day but it's not bad. You won't need pain med. at all. It doesn't take long. Some people like to put the fear into you but don't listen.
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I am due up for my first mammogram and I am dreading it. Anyone have any tips for overcoming the fear and pain involved? Can you take pain medicine before hand? Do they keep you in the vise grip for long? How long does the procedure last? Any tips will be much appreciated.
Amy from USA
I, too, had my 1st mammogram a year ago and I had the same concerns since I am a large-breasted woman. I am also an X-ray Technologist (not the ones who do the mammograms) so I had the rudiments of training during my own schooling. I must tell you that it wasn't nearly as bad as I had built it up in my mind.
Here are some important concepts to keep in mind.
Hope this helps you. Best of luck. (09/18/2006)
By Linda from Illinois
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