Mammograms (x-rays of the breast) can identify many breast cancers before they can be felt. Every woman who has been diagnosed and treated for breast cancer should have a yearly regular mammogram, unless both breasts have been removed.
Some breast cancers may not be detected by mammography, especially in pre-menopausal women. Therefore, it also is necessary to have regular breast examinations in addition to regular mammograms.
If you've had a lumpectomy, mammograms may be recommended to the treated breast following your radiation treatment. Thereafter, mammograms will be recommended every year. Routine mammography should continue at regular intervals for your untreated breast.
If you have breast implants you may or may not need mammography, depending upon whether or not you still have breast tissue left. If you have had breast reconstruction using your own tissue following a mastectomy, mammograms in your reconstructed breast are not necessary.