mammography, diagnostic procedure that uses low-dose X rays to detect abnormalities in the breasts. The early diagnosis of breast cancer made possible by the routine use of mammography for screening women increases a woman's treatment alternatives and improves her chances of surviving the cancer. Mammograms can detect tumors too small to be noticed on physical examination. Although opinions vary, it is generally recommended that women have a baseline study done in their thirties and have regular mammograms done at given intervals thereafter.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.