Breast Ultrasounds at ZP
Breast ultrasound imaging uses sound waves to produce pictures of the internal structures of the breast. This procedure is primarily done to help diagnose breast lumps or other abnormalities your doctor may have found during a physical exam, mammogram, or breast MRI. Breast ultrasounds are safe, non-invasive, and do not use any radiation. This test is often administered when a change has been seen on a mammogram or when a change is felt but does not show up on a mammogram.
Breast ultrasounds are not done to screen for breast cancer, as it may miss some early signs of cancer. Early signs of breast cancer may not show up on ultrasound, so other equipment and procedures will need to be used in order to determine a diagnosis.
Why Might You Need a Breast Ultrasound?
- You have particularly dense breast tissue.
- A mammogram may not be able to see through this tissue.
- You are pregnant. Ultrasound does not use any radiation, making it safer for the fetus.
- You are younger than age 25.
- Your healthcare provider wants to look at nearby lymph nodes.
- Your healthcare provider needs to use ultrasound to guide a needle during a biopsy.
Benefits of Ultrasound
Safe and Non-Invasive
Aids in Detection of Abnormalities
Widely Available and Less Expensive
How is the Procedure Done
Your radiologist will move a wand-like device, called a transducer, over your skin to take images of your breasts. The transducer sends out waves that bounce off your breast tissue. The sound waves are too high-pitched for you to hear, but the transducer can pick up the bounced sound waves, which are then made into pictures of the inside of your breasts.
Depending on your procedure, your physician may also use another device called a Doppler probe, which allows your radiologist to hear the sounds waves the transducer sends out. With this device, they can hear how fast blood is flowing through a blood vessel and in which direction it is flowing. No sound, or a faint sound, may mean that you have a blockage in the flow.
How To Prepare
Preparing for a breast ultrasound is easy because it is a low-risk, non-invasive procedure. Before beginning the procedure, your healthcare provider will explain the process and answer any questions you have. You may be asked to sign a consent form that gives permission to do the test. During this time, it is a good idea to ask any questions if something is not clear. You will not need any medication to help you relax.
You do not need to stop eating or drinking before the test, but you should not put any lotion, powder, or other substances on your breasts on the day of the test.
Do wear clothes that you can easily take off or clothes that allow the radiologist or technologist to reach your chest.
Zwanger-Pesiri takes a client-centric approach to all of our procedures. We take great strides to ensure that every patient feels welcomed, safe, and comfortable, no matter what they are visiting us for. Our Board-Certified radiologists are subspecialty trained in their field, so you can rest assured that every image is being interpreted professionally and most accurately.