mammogram while breastfeeding?? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 01-23-2005, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is it safe to get a mammogram while breastfeeding? I am nursing my 20 month old and am scheduled for a mammogram on Tuesday. It is just a routine one, since I'm now 35, I guess that makes me eligible :-)

I started thinking this is probably not safe for my daughter, but I wanted to get advice from you all rather than discuss it with the radiologist... if you kwim.

thanks,
Lisa
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#2 of 6 Old 01-24-2005, 02:51 PM
 
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I am editing this and giving you a link that I found: http://www.kellymom.com/health/meds/radioisotopes.html

I wish I would have found this before I had a CT scan a while back. Not fun! I guess the only other thing I found was that sometimes it's more difficult to read the tests with the milk glands.

Good Luck!

tayndrewsmama
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#3 of 6 Old 01-24-2005, 03:04 PM
 
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I am also 35 and about to have my first mammogram this week. I was surprised to hear they'd changed the routine first age for one to 35 (from the previous 40). My women's health care provider wanted to be sure I was done nursing my youngest (19 months now) and I am so I am going ahead with the mammogram. She didn't tell me if it was because they couldn't get a good reading if I was or if it was harmful to me or the baby, but since I'm done nursing, I didn't ask. I am curious to follow the link above and see what info is there.
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#4 of 6 Old 01-24-2005, 03:04 PM
 
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I haven't yet researched this, but here are my first thoughts:

A mammogram is just a fancy X-ray that involves alot of squishing. The theoretical danger of radiation is that too much of it can mess up your DNA. Your body has enzymes to repair the damage, but they can be overwhelmed if you receive too high a dose. The amount in a mammogram is far, far, far below this limit. And regardless, it absolutely should not do anything bad to the milk you're producing.

My bigger concern would be that the mammogram wouldn't be able to get an accurate read of your breast tissue, and so wouldn't be worth very much. Remember that the purpose of a mammogram at this age is twofold:

1. To look for any problems (and unless you've got a family history, the risk of your having a serious problem at your age is pretty tiny.)
2. To give a baseline image to compare to future mammograms, when you're older and the risk of problems will be higher.

Since your breasts are going to look different on a mammogram when you're lactating, it's not going to be able to act as a baseline for future mammograms. If you're going to go through all the discomfort of a mammo, it might be best to wait until you're done lactating to avoid confusing people!
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#5 of 6 Old 01-24-2005, 03:06 PM
 
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Just found this link from La Leche League.
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#6 of 6 Old 01-24-2005, 06:43 PM
 
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My doc specifically said not to get a mammogram until I'm finished bf. She said it's pointless to do it because the breast tissue while your bf is dense and different than it normally would be. This she told me at my annual physical when I turned 40 in Oct. It will be my first mammogram and I told her I probably won't stop bf until ds turns at least 2 in June. She said no prob waiting, just keep doing self exams at least monthly.

HTH

Tracy
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