A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast without the use of contrast agents. Despite the emergence of contrasting methods of x-ray examinations (ductography - study duct cancers and pneumocystography is the contrast cancer gas or air), and radioisotope investigations of the breast, mammography remains a very effective method of diagnosis, especially in the detection of cancer and other breast tumors.
mammography breast cancer

Fig. 1. Mammogram: left chest x-ray and modern digital mammogram (in both cases, the mammary gland OK) right - breast cancer

Mammography has over other methods of research of a number of important advantages: 1) it can be done in any x-ray room and is practically no contraindications; 2) mammography technique is relatively simple, not burdensome for the patient and can be carried out in out-patient conditions; 3) the radiation dose to the patient with the right methods and techniques of research is relatively small, reaching on the skin surface of 0,3 R in a single photo that at 4 x-ray, is usually sufficient to judgments about the nature of pathological changes, does not exceed 1,2 R.

radiography of the mammary glands
Fig. 2. Installation with x-ray examination of mammary glands:
1 - front projection; 2 and 3 - side (main and additional) projection.

For review mammography in direct projection patient is seated at small x-ray protective screen or at the table. You need to carefully protect the abdomen and thighs investigated lead-impregnated with rubber. Then the breast is placed on the cartridge size 13X 18 cm, and with a massive iron - 18X24 cm, achieving a height adjustable seat the most complete adhesion of the breast to the cassette. The head of the patient should be rotated in the opposite investigated gland, and shoulder lowered and taken back. The Central beam must pass through the center of the breast perpendicular to the cassette (Fig. 2,1). Images produced with breath investigated. The choice of technical conditions of the picture depends on the size of the breast, the film quality and intensifying screens and type x-ray machine. Usually the images are produced at a relatively low voltage on x-ray tube (25-40 kV), skin-focal length of 35 to 100 cm, power anode current 60 to 200 mA and extracts from tenths of a second at the pictures with intensifying screens up to 3 sec. when non-screen film. As the pictures on non-screen film require a significant increase in exposure to apply them without special indications should not be.
Mammography lateral projection is carried out at a horizontal position of the investigated (Fig. 2, 2 and 3), providing a thorough protect her body from the scattered x-ray radiation. Sometimes at the direction of the doctor-radiologist to improve the quality of the shot is used mammography with General or local autocompress breast cancer and mammograms when drawn to the nipple. In all these cases are investigated using. For General autocompress you must have a cardboard or aluminum plate, which she herself studied presses to the breast.
Cm. also Radiography.