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If something abnormal is detected in a mammogram, the next step is usually to take additional x-ray views or an ultrasound. Ultrasound is also used to create visual images of breast tissue. Ultrasonography, or ultrasound, uses high-frequency sound waves. The images it creates can be viewed on a monitor and allows your healthcare professional to see if a breast lump is a fluid-filled cyst (not cancer) or a solid mass (which may or may not be cancer). Ultrasound may be used with a mammogram, and the images produced are printed and/or stored as video.
Mammography is more difficult in younger women, since they have more dense fibrous tissue, which can make it more difficult to visualize tumors. It is not uncommon that a breast ultrasound will be done as well as a mammogram in order to properly screen women who have extremely dense breast tissue. Ultrasounds may also be useful in determining suspicious areas, such as a cyst, or may be useful for guiding the needle biopsies. Magnetic resonance imagings (MRIs) can be used for patients who have very dense breasts.
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