How Long Do Breasts Hurt After a Mammogram?

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Mammograms are an important part of breast cancer prevention and detection. Though the process is relatively quick and virtually painless, some women report minor discomfort. So, how long do breasts hurt after a mammogram?

Rest assured that the discomfort you feel after a mammogram is normal and temporary. In fact, special tools like the MammoPad may help by providing a soft, protective surface. Call Professionals for Women's Health to schedule your breast exam today. An OB/GYN in Columbus can ensure a seamless experience from beginning to end.

How is a mammogram performed?

A mammogram is a short breast exam that involves delivering a low dose of radiation to each breast. Your breasts are placed between two metal plates and then compressed to obtain clear images – this compression is usually the hardest part of the experience. The appointment only takes a few minutes, but you may feel some lingering discomfort.

What causes breast pain after a mammogram?

Several factors contribute to post-mammogram breast pain. First, the compression of your breasts during the exam can lead to some tenderness and soreness. The amount of pain involved depends on the size of your breasts and the various positions you are asked to hold.

Other factors that impact breast pain:

  • The timing of your breast exam: Hormone fluctuations can increase breast tenderness. If your mammogram is scheduled near the beginning or end of your menstrual cycle, you are more likely to experience post-mammogram discomfort.
  • A previous breast injury: Trauma to the breasts can make the tissue more sensitive.
  • A breast lump or cyst: The plates may place pressure on a lump or cyst, causing additional pain.

How long does breast pain last after a mammogram?

Any discomfort caused by a mammogram is short-lived. Most women report that any unwanted sensations dissipate within 24 hours. If your pain persists or is severe, contact your OB/GYN in Columbus for information and guidance.

How to alleviate breast pain after a mammogram

There are ways to ease pain after a mammogram at Professionals for Women's Health. First, we recommend taking an ibuprofen or acetaminophen a few hours before your appointment. Inform the mammography technologist of any areas that are particularly sensitive so they can be avoided.

After your mammogram, you may also find relief by:

  • Applying a cool compress to your breasts
  • Wearing a supportive bra
  • Using a heating pad on a low setting
  • Taking a warm bath

About the MammoPad

A MammoPad is a soft, padded insert that can be placed on the compression plate during your mammogram. It evenly distributes the compression force and provides a cushion of protection between your breast and the hard surface of the machine. Many women find that the FDA-approved MammoPad significantly increases their comfort during and after the exam.

Professionals for Women's Health can provide the MammoPad for a $10 fee at the time of your breast exam. Ask us about this option during your appointment.

Schedule a mammogram with the MammoPad

There is no need to suffer during a regular mammogram. With the MammoPad, you can have a comfortable experience and get the peace of mind you need. Call Professionals for Women's Health to schedule this essential breast exam. An experienced OB/GYN in Columbus can explain all your options and help you choose the best course of action for your health.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.