Breast imaging

Breast health - important self care

At UW Health our breast imaging team provides state-of-the-art imaging of the breasts for screening and diagnostic services.
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Overview

What is breast imaging

At UW Health, we use advanced imaging modalities including digital mammography, digital breast tomosynthesis, ultrasound, and breast MRI to find breast cancer as early as possible. We provide screening and diagnostic imaging services.

Mammography

Screening mammography

A screening mammogram is used to detect breast changes in patients who do not have signs or symptoms of breast cancer. Screening mammograms are proven to detect breast cancer early, when it is most treatable, and save lives. We use digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) at all UW Health locations. All women should talk to their doctor about when to have their first mammogram, especially if they are at high risk for breast cancer.

A radiology technologist specially trained in mammography takes mammogram images of your breasts. The technologist places each breast between two smooth flat plates. The plates gently compress the breast to get the highest quality images. The pressure might be slightly uncomfortable. Compression is brief, but important.

A radiologist views and interprets your breast images on specialized computer monitors.

At UW Health, we recommend these guidelines if you are at average risk for breast cancer. If you think you might be at high risk for developing breast cancer, please contact our PATHS clinic.

Age 40-49: Talk with your doctor at age 40. Understand your breast cancer risks. Know your preferences for breast cancer screening. Consider a screening mammogram every one to two years.

Age 50-74: Get a screening mammogram every one to two years.

Age 75 and older: Consider a screening mammogram every one to two years, based on your doctor’s recommendations.

Diagnostic mammography

This type of mammogram is most often performed for women with signs or symptoms of breast cancer to get more information after a screening mammogram shows an area of concern. A diagnostic mammogram includes additional images of the breast.

A diagnostic mammogram involves one or more special mammogram images taken from different angles. These allow detailed evaluation of an area of the breast. This test is often used for one of two reasons: a new clinical finding or an abnormal screening mammogram.

Dense breasts

Dense breasts are common and normal. Dense breasts are seen on mammography in nearly half of all women. Dense breasts can increase the chance of developing breast cancer. They also make cancers more difficult to see on a mammogram. Learn more about dense breasts

Types of breast imaging

In addition to mammography, we use a variety of tools and technologies to screen, detect and diagnose breast cancer. If cancer is suspected, these tests help our doctors further investigate to understand the type of cancer, as well as determine the stage and location of the cancer.

When breast cancer is possibility, a biopsy is often recommended. A biopsy is a tissue sample of the area of concern that will be sent for review by a Pathologist to confirm whether or not there is cancer present. Breast imaging Radiologists use images to guide them to the location of an abnormality to use biopsies. Ultrasound is often used to guide biopsy, but mammograms can also be used (called a stereotactic biopsy) and MRI can guide a biopsy as well. After tissue samples are taken, a tiny marker clip will be used to mark the location for future mammograms or surgery. Find out more about breast biopsies

Learn more

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the breast is used for screening in some patients at increased risk for breast cancer and also to determine the extent of cancer in some patients who have recently been diagnosed with breast cancer. Sometimes it is also used to find the source of a suspected cancer or to monitor response to therapy for breast cancer. Learn more about breast MRI

Learn more

Dr. Roberta Strigel explains the tools providers use to screen women for breast cancer.

Schedule

How to schedule

Screening mammograms

There are three ways to schedule a screening mammogram:

UW Health MyChart users can schedule screening mammograms online through their MyChart account.

Go to MyChart

Contact your primary care provider and they can assist you with scheduling a screening mammogram.

You can schedule a screening mammogram at any one of our locations below by calling either (608) 266-6400 or (608) 287-2050.

UW Health Mammogram Locations

  • University Hospital UW Health Breast Center

  • UW Health 1 S. Park Breast Center

  • UW Health DeForest-Windsor Clinic

  • UW Health East Clinic

  • UW Health Odana Atrium Clinic

  • UW Health Union Corners Clinic

  • UW Health West Clinic

  • UW Health Yahara Clinic

Diagnostic mammograms

If you are asked to have diagnostic mammogram images following a screening mammogram, a UW Health staff member will contact you to schedule the appropriate appointments.

Additional resources

PriceLine can provide cost information regarding breast imaging exams. Call (608) 263-1507

The Wisconsin Well Women Program can assist patients without insurance coverage pay for screening mammograms. Call (608) 266-8311

UW Health's PATHS Clinic can assist women who have an increased risk of breast cancer evaluate their breast cancer risk and come up with a personalized screening and treatment plan.

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Second opinion
The confidence you need

At UW Health, we know how concerning a breast cancer diagnosis can be. We want you to feel comfortable about your diagnosis and find the best therapy for you. Through a second opinion, you may also learn about new treatment options and find new hope.

Our team

The breast imaging team

The breast imaging team at UW Health includes radiologists who are experts in all areas of imaging.

Locations

Locations

You can schedule a screening mammogram at any one of our locations below by calling either (608) 266-6400 or (608) 287-2050.

  • University Hospital UW Health Breast Center

  • UW Health 1 S. Park Breast Center

  • UW Health DeForest-Windsor Clinic

  • UW Health East Clinic

  • UW Health Odana Atrium Clinic

  • UW Health Union Corners Clinic

  • UW Health West Clinic

  • UW Health Yahara Clinic

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  • University Hospital - Breast Center
    • 600 Highland Ave. / Madison, WI
    • (608) 266-6400
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  • 1 S. Park Clinic - Mammography
    • 1 S. Park St. / Madison, WI
    • (608) 287-2050
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  • DeForest-Windsor Clinic - X-rays and Mammography
    • 4131 Meridian Dr. / Windsor, WI
    • (608) 846-3741
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  • East Clinic - Mammography
    • 5249 E. Terrace Dr. / Madison, WI
    • (608) 265-1260
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  • Odana Atrium Clinic - Mammography
    • 5618 Odana Rd. / Madison, WI
    • (608) 287-2050
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  • Union Corners Clinic - Mammography
    • 2402 Winnebago Street / Madison, WI
    • (608) 245-6122
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  • West Clinic - Mammography
    • 451 Junction Rd. / Madison, WI
    • (608) 265-7539
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  • Yahara Clinic - X-rays and Mammography
    • 1050 East Broadway / Monona, WI
    • (608) 222-8779
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UW Health Breast Center

Our expert team of doctors and other healthcare professionals cares for more than 850 new breast cancer patients and more than 3,000 survivors each year. We also care for many patients with non-cancerous breast conditions and those who are at high risk for getting breast cancer. This wide variety of breast care gives our Breast Center team a level of experience that is unsurpassed in Wisconsin and the region.

Learn more