One out of 8 American women develops breast cancer. The exact cause is not yet known, so little can be done to prevent it. However, it is clear that the earlier breast cancer is detected, when the tumor is smallest, the better the chances for treatment and cure. Breast examinations by women themselves, by physicians, and by state of the art technology such as DIGITAL mammography are vital to early detection, and why more women are recovering from breast cancer today than ever before. Important symptoms to watch for include changes in breast contour, dimpling, scaling, or puckering of the skin around the nipple; nipple secretion; a lump or thickening; or other changes that you feel are not normal. However, breast cancer symptoms are often not obvious - no lump, no pain, nothing. So, symptoms or not, check with your physician about the special benefits of DIGITAL mammography, since its advanced technology can help detect breast cancer at the earliest phase to maximize effectiveness of treatment and cure.
Remember, early detection of breast cancer is the key to treatment and cure, so examinations are important. However, individual examinations needs vary. Due to factors such as advancing age and family history, some women are at higher risk than others. Of course, women with symptoms should see their doctor without hesitation. Women without symptoms should be sure to consult their physician to determine their individual breast examination needs.
You should examine your breasts every month and have your doctor examine them during regular checkups. If you menstruate, a good time to examine your breasts is soon after your period ends. Women who are pregnant or who no longer menstruate should examine their breasts at the same time every month. The breast self-exam is a good way to find lumps or other changes in the breasts. However, it should not take the place of mammography. Mammography can detect growths that are too small for you or your doctor to feel.
- The self-exam should be done in good light. Stand or sit in front of a mirror, arms at your sides. Look for dimpling, puckering, or redness of the breast skin, pulling in of the nipples, and changes in breast size or shape. Look for the same signs with your hands pressed tightly on your hips and then with your arms raised high.
- Lie flat on your back. Place a folded towel or pillow under your left shoulder and place your left hand under or over your head. With your right hand, keeping the fingers flat and together, gently feel your left breast without pressing too hard. Use small, circular motions. Begin at the top of your breast and move around the outside in a large circle. When you return to the top, move your hand closer to the nipple and make a smaller circle. Do this in smaller and smaller circles until you have examined all of the breast tissue.
- Examine the nipple areas in the same way. Gently squeeze the nipple and check for any discharge. Also be sure to examine the areas below the armpits. Then do the same on the other breast.
- Self examination of the breast is a precaution and should not be substituted for medical examination by a qualified doctor.
State of the Art
Advanced Imaging offers the ONLY 3D DIGITAL Mammography/ Breast Tomosynthesis in Alabama, as well as the highest field MRI (1.5), and a CT with the highest quality images in the region and with the best 3D and vascular capabilities available.
Our Bone Density is the most accurate, lowest dose machine in the area and our Digital X-ray has the fastest, highest fidelity digital system, with lower radiation dose than film. Advanced Imaging Ultrasound is the latest technology with the highest fidelity images available.