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Screening vs. Diagnostic Mammography

Rex Mammography Services offers both screening and diagnostic mammography. Screening mammography is performed in asymptomatic patients, or those who have no clinical signs or symptoms of breast cancer. For these exams, two views of each breast are obtained by the technologist. These are interpreted later by the radiologist with results sent to the patient by mail.

Diagnostic mammography is performed in symptomatic patients - those patients who have signs or symptoms of breast cancer such as a palpable lump, nipple discharge or skin changes.

Eligibility for Screening Mammography

To be eligible for a screening mammogram, the patient must

  • Have no previous history of breast cancer
  • Not have any present symptoms, such as pain, lumps or nipple discharge
  • Not be pregnant or breast-feeding

Eligibility for Diagnostic Mammography

To be eligible for a diagnostic mammogram, the patient must

  • Have an order from physician
  • Have a family or personal history of breast cancer
  • Present symptoms, such as pain, lumps or nipple discharge

Insurance Coverage for Mammography

Requirements to qualify for insurance coverage vary. If you have questions, talk with your provider about specific requirements for coverage under your plan.

Your insurance provider may require one or more of the following:

  • That the patient be at least 35 years old for a baseline (first time) mammogram
  • That the patient be at least 40 years old for an annual mammogram
  • That the patient has not had a mammogram within the last 12 months