A breast ultrasound exam, sometimes called a sonogram , uses sound waves to create an image of the inside of your breast. It can be used as a screening procedure to check breast health or to aid in the diagnostic process, such as for breast cancer. It's frequently performed after a mammogram or clinical exam finds an area of concern in the breast. Women start out with dense breast tissue, which then naturally becomes fattier with age. Mammograms have a hard time imaging dense tissue , so an ultrasound may be ordered to get a clearer image.
Breast ultrasound uses sound waves to make a computer picture of the inside of the breast. It can show certain breast changes, like fluid-filled cysts, that are harder to identify on mammograms. Ultrasound is useful for looking at some breast changes, such as lumps especially those that can be felt but not seen on a mammogram or changes in women with dense breast tissue. It also can be used to look at a suspicious area that was seen on a mammogram.
Getting called back after a screening mammogram is pretty common but can be scary. But getting called back does not mean you have breast cancer. It means that the doctors have found something they wan to look at more closely. If you get called back, it's usually to take new pictures or get other tests. Less than 1 in 10 women called back for more tests are found to have cancer.
Last Updated: October 17, References. Sarah has over 10 years of experience teaching and practicing phlebotomy and intravenous IV therapy using physical, psychological, and emotional support. There are 11 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 1,, times. An ultrasound may be performed for a variety of reasons, but looking at a baby in the womb is the most common reason.