A mammogram is a scan that uses low dose X-rays to examine the breast. It is used to help identify breast cancer in its early stages as it can find cancers that are too small to feel.
A referral letter from a consultant or GP is required before booking any diagnostic investigation.
Breast cancer affects one in eight women in the UK, according to the charity Breast Cancer Care, with 81% of cases occurring in women over the age of 50.
A mammogram can help detect breast cancer at its early stages. Younger women may also have this test if they have found a lump, and breast cancer runs in their family.
If you decide to have your procedure with us, you will be looked after by an experienced multi-disciplinary care team.
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Our patients are at the heart of what we do and we want you to be in control of your care.
All of our radiographers are of the highest standard and benefit from working in our modern, well equipped hospitals.
you will need a referral letter from a consultant or GP before booking any diagnostic investigation.
You will have a formal consultation with a healthcare professional. During this time you will be able to explain your medical history, symptoms and raise any concerns that you might have.
We will also discuss with you whether any further diagnostic tests, such as scans or blood tests, are needed. Any additional costs will be discussed before further tests are carried out.
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Our dedicated team will also give you tailored advice to follow in the run up to your visit.
You will need to keep your underarms and breasts clean and clear from any lotions or anti-perspiration as it can affect the imaging. Your radiographer will give you further, tailored advice to follow in the run up to your mammogram.
We understand that having a mammogram can potentially be a time of anxiety and worry. Our experienced and caring medical staff will be there for you, holding your hand, every step of the way.
During the procedure, your radiographer will position your breast in a mammography unit. Your breast will be placed on a special platform and compressed with a paddle. This is necessary so all the breast tissue can be X-rayed. The radiographer will then walk behind a screen and activate the machine. If you are younger and have more dense breast tissue, you may be offered an ultrasound scan.
Your doctor will be looking at the pictures as the images are shown on screen and will determine the best course of follow-up action as provided by the national diagnostic system for reading mammogram - provided by BI-RADS, or the Breast Imaging Reporting and Database System.
The system categorises lumps from zero to six and details the next course of action for each category - whether more investigations are needed such as more imagery, a biopsy or regular screening. We will discuss this with you during your appointment.
The whole procedure will take around 30 minutes.
*Procedures available may vary on location.
As this is an outpatient procedure, you will be able to leave after your test. We take an integrated approach so we can organise any other breast care that you may need after your mammogram.
We are committed to delivering excellent individual care and customer service across our network of hospitals, clinics and specialist care centres around the UK. Our dedicated and highly trained team aim to achieve consistently excellent results. For us it's more than just treating patients, it's about looking after people.
The treatment described on this page may be adapted to meet your individual needs, so it's important to follow your healthcare professional's advice and raise any questions that you may have with them.
You'll find us approximately eight miles from Maidstone and five miles from Chatham. London Gatwick Airport is approximately 45 miles away.
We offer services to patients throughout the South East of England and Kent, particularly Medway and the surrounding areas including Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, Rainham, Sittingbourne, Sheppey and Maidstone.
Spire Alexandra Hospital is only able to provide Covid-19 tests to patients undergoing surgery at our hospital. Covid-19 testing or antibody tests are not available as a standalone service.