Why It Is Done
Breast ultrasound can add important information to the results of other tests, such as a mammogram or Reference magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) Opens New Window. It also may provide information that is not found with a mammogram. A breast ultrasound may be done to:
- Find the cause of breast symptoms, such as pain, swelling, and redness.
- Check a breast lump found on breast self-examination or physical examination. It is used to see whether a breast lump is fluid-filled (a cyst) or if it is a solid lump. A lump that has no fluid or that has fluid with floating particles may need more tests.
- Check abnormal results from a mammogram.
- Look at the breasts in younger women because their breast tissue is often more dense, and a mammogram may not show as much detail.
- Reference Guide the placement of a needle or other tube to drain a collection of fluid (Reference cyst Opens New Window) or pus (Reference abscess Opens New Window), take a sample of breast tissue (Reference biopsy Opens New Window), or guide breast surgery.
- Watch for changes in the size of a cyst or a noncancerous lump (fibroadenoma).
- See how far cancer has spread in a breast.
- Check your breasts if you have silicone breast implants or dense breasts. In these situations, a mammogram may not be able to see breast lumps.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference March 8, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Howard Schaff, MD - Diagnostic Radiology