Breast density: questions to ask your doctor

Doctor and Patient Discussing Medication

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) On June 1, 2015 women across the state of Michigan will begin to receive notifications of breast density in their mammogram results. The bill opens the door for women to have further discussions with their doctors about their breast density.

Dense breast tissue can ultimately hide cancer on a mammogram. Women with dense tissue need to have conversations with their primary care physicians about their density. If you receive a notification that you have dense tissue here are some important questions to ask your doctor.

Questions to ask your doctor:

1. My mammogram results say I’m dense? What does that mean?
2. How dense am I?
3. What percentage by volume of my tissue appears dense on my mammogram?
4. What are the options for follow up tests?  Describe the pros and cons of each.
5. What factors affect my density?  Can it be changed?
6. What are other breast cancer risk factors are there? Do I have any?
7. Since I have dense breasts, how can I reduce my risk of getting cancer?
8. How often should I get follow up tests due to my density?
9. Is density hereditary?
Download a Density Question Sheet to take with you to a doctor’s appointment.

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