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Can I Get a Mammogram While Breastfeeding?

Getting a mammogram is an important part of your healthcare, but many mothers wonder if it is safe to have a mammogram while breastfeeding. The short answer is YES. Breastfeeding mothers are able to have mammograms. Regardless of whether you are breastfeeding or not, any changes or abnormalities in your breast should be evaluated.

While it is possible to have a mammogram when breastfeeding, the milk can obscure small structures in the breast. For this reason, it is recommended that breastfeeding mothers with no breast symptoms hold off on their screening mammography until approximately 3 months after they are finished breastfeeding. This allows for a clearer, more accurate mammogram. However, if a lump or other symptom is discovered while breastfeeding, the mother should still come in for imaging to have the area evaluated with mammography and/or breast ultrasound.

Human milk is unaffected by mammography, so new mothers can resume nursing right after the exam is completed. Since there is zero contamination of breast milk, a mammogram procedure can not harm your baby. To avoid discomfort we suggest that patients try to relieve their breasts of as much milk as possible before the actual exam.

It’s important to note that another benefit of breastfeeding is a lower mortality rate for women who breastfeed their babies.

Without a doubt, if you feel a suspicious lump or swelling of your breast, it is necessary to consult your doctor and see if a mammogram is necessary. Breastfeeding mothers are advised to see radiologists who have performed and interpreted mammograms on lactating women. At Connecticut Breast Imaging, we have trained experts in this area and provide patients with the care and diagnostics necessary for proper evaluations.

Visit Connecticut Breast Imaging online here.

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