Friday, July 24, 2009


If you are a man, you can choose whether or not this post is your cup of tea, but I wanted to put this information out there for women who get mammograms.

I went in for a mammogram the other day and had a long chat with the technician. The actual mammogram was painful, but not nearly as bad as ones I've had in the past. When I mentioned that to her, she told me that she does them a little differently. She said that there is a foot pump that makes the table compress the breast. She said that most technicians just use their foot to put pressure until it is tight. She, however, only uses the foot pedal part way, then uses her hand to tighten it with a knob on the side of the machine. She can tell better by using her hand if she is putting it too tight. She did admit that she has repetitive motion injuries in her wrist from doing it by hand, but she feels it is important for the benefit of the women she works with. That was by far the best one I've ever had.

So I suggest that in the future when you get a mammogram, ask the technician to only use the foot pump part way, then tighten the rest of the way by hand. It won't hurt them to do it for one patient when other patients don't know they have the option. I actually came away from that mammogram not feeling upset or injured!


Amber said...

i'm so glad i'm still young enough that i don't have to get the machine version

Nene said...

My mamograms don't bother me any more. The technician said they have a new machine now. I also wonder if it's because I try relaxing more and not tensing up. The technician said the new machines don't hurt as much anymore, so maybe that's it.