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What is on a mammogram report?

Jamie L. Caughran, MD
Surgery
A mammogram report contains two notable figures -- the breast density and Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) classifications. In this video, Jamie Caughran, MD, FACS, of Mercy Health, explains how each of these is scored.

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To interpret the results of a mammogram, you should consult your doctor, who will help you to understand the correct way to read your mammogram report. Mammogram reports are sorted into seven categories numbered 0 through 6, according to standards developed by the American College of Radiology. This system is called the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) and the categories in the system are as follows.
  •  Category 0: Incomplete. Need additional imaging (your doctor may send you for a second mammogram) or comparison to prior mammograms.
  •  Category 1: Negative. Essentially 0 percent likelihood of a malignancy.
  •  Category 2: Benign. Essentially 0 percent likelihood of a malignancy.
  •  Category 3: Less than 2 percent likelihood of a malignancy, but continued surveillance mammography possibly at six-month intervals, recommended.
  •  Category 4: Suspicious. Category 4A or "low suspicion" means greater than 2 percent but less than or equal to 10 percent likelihood of malignancy; Category 4B or "moderate suspicion" means greater than 10 percent but less than or equal to 50 percent likelihood of malignancy; Category 4C or "high suspicion" means greater than 50 percent but less than 95 percent likelihood of malignancy.
  •  Category 5: Highly suggestive of malignancy. This means greater than or equal to 95 percent likelihood of malignancy.
  •  Category 6: Known biopsy/proven malignancy.
 If you fall into a category 4 or higher, your doctor will likely recommend a biopsy of your breast tissue.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.