Frequently asked questions

What insurance plans do you accept?


We limit the number of patients we see daily which allows us to read your films and give you your results before you leave. There is no insurance reimbursement for this service and we are therefore unable to contract with insurance companies. Although you are responsible for payment at the time of service, we will give you all the codes and completed paperwork necessary to submit to your insurance company so they can reimburse you directly. We do take Medicare. We do read your screening mammogram immediately and we give you your results before you leave. However, Medicare does not allow us to consult with you following a normal result for a screening mammogram. If however there is a finding on your mammogram that needs additional views or ultrasound we perform these immediately. So you never have to return for a second visit. If your mammogram is abnormal our radiologist meets with you and discusses your results with you right away.




Do I need a doctor referral to make an appointment?


Depending on the reason you are having an exam, the type of exam you are scheduling and what your insurance covers, a referral is sometimes required. If you have Medicare, you must have a referral. It is best to call our office if you have a question concerning a referral.




How far in advance do I need to make an appointment?


At Breastnet, we are committed to being the most responsive breast imaging center in Arizona. We can usually schedule your appointment within 72 hours of your call. In the case of a new breast lump, we will see you on the next business day.




How long does a mammogram take?


A digital mammogram takes about 10 minutes and is reviewed immediately by the radiologist.
Screening whole breast ultrasound takes approximately 20 minutes and about about another 10 minutes for radiological review.




How long will it take for my doctor to receive the results of my test?


Because all exams are completed in our office by our physicians, your results are made available to you at the conclusion of your appointment. Results will be sent to your physician within 24 hours of your examination.




Who conducts mammograms?


At Breastnet, all exams are completed by female mammography technologists with more than 5 years of experience each.




Who will discuss the results of my test with me?


Our Breastnet physicians sit down with you upon the conclusion of your exam and review the results of your test immediately. When you leave Breastnet, you will have your results. Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover this consultation. If you are on Medicare, our physician will interpret your results while you are at Breastnet and you will be given your results by our technologist. If, however, you have a new finding on your mammogram, our physician will consult with you immediately in order for you to have a full understanding of your results prior to leaving.




What type of payments are accepted at Breastnet?


We accept MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Debit Cards, HSA Cards, checks or cash.




Do you take Medicare?


Yes we do take Medicare. We do read your screening mammogram immediately and we give you your results before you leave. However, Medicare does not allow us to consult with you following a normal result for a screening mammogram. If however there is a finding on your mammogram that needs additional views or ultrasound we perform these immediately. So you never have to return for a second visit. If your mammogram is abnormal our radiologist meets with you and discusses your results with you right away. If you need further information please give us a call at 480 314 7600.




Why is a mammogram better than a thermogram?


A mammogram is an x-ray used to exam the breast and to detect an actual mass or calcification in the breast tissue. It evaluates breast changes in women who have no breast complaints or symptoms and in women who experience breast problems such as a lump, pain, or nipple discharge. Most often, mammograms used to look for cancer in women who have no symptoms are referred to as screening mammograms. Mammograms performed on women who have lumps or who have a suspicious change seen on a screening mammogram, are called diagnostic mammograms. A thermogram is used to detect subtle changes in the heat of the breast, which may or may not be cancer. The entire thermogram process can take up to 25 minutes. In many centers that offer thermograms, there is usually a 10 to 15 minute waiting period prior to the imaging time for the patient’s skin to adjust to the room temperature. During this time, patients are alone in an environmentally controlled room to acclimate the surface of the skin to be imaged and must be free of clothing and jewelry during this step. When the imaging starts, the patient stands in front of the thermal imaging camera with fingers/hands inter-clasp and placed on the back of the head, with elbows pointing out to their sides. While the patient is disrobed from the waist-up, the technician takes between 7-9 views/thermal images, which usually requires 10 minutes. The thermogram creates infrared images (heat pictures) that the doctor analyzes to find any asymmetries. Any abnormality that causes change in heat production is seen on a thermogram. Inflammation such as infections, trauma to the breast and even sunburn will cause abnormalities in thermal pictures. Breast cancer is only one of the abnormalities that can be detected in the development of breast cancer. Can I get a Thermogram and skip the Mammogram? The problem with thermograms is that women are having these done without having mammograms. Thermograms can miss breast cancers, which can be caught on mammograms, and/or ultrasound and can also show false positive results. (This means there is a heat change that is due to something other than cancer.) If an unusual result is found on a thermogram, the physician will then recommend having a mammogram as well, thus having to do both procedures. Not only does this take time and cause worry, it can be costly, since thermograms are not covered by insurance. A recent case involved a patient’s mammogram which clearly showed a large left breast cancer tumor, easily seen on the mammogram. The tumor did not show up on the thermogram study that the patient had previously. Had the patient skipped her mammogram, this cancer would have grown even larger until eventually, it was either felt or ulcerated the skin. Presently the standard of care is an annual mammogram beginning at age 35 to 40 depending on family history. Depending on breast density, screening whole breast ultrasounds may be indicated in addition to mammography. Monthly self breast examination and an annual physical breast exam performed by your doctor is still recommended. Women who have dense breast tissue should consider additional screening tools such as whole breast ultrasound and breast MRI depending again on family history.




What is a Breast MRI


MRI uses a magnetic field and radio waves together with a computer to create cross-sectional, three-dimensional pictures of the breast.
MRI of the breast is not a replacement for mammography or ultrasound imaging, but rather is a supplemental tool for detecting and staging breast cancer and other breast abnormalities. Medical studies now show breast MRI can contribute to the early detection of, and prevention of, deaths from breast cancer. Recent research has demonstrated that MRI can detect some small breast lesions sometimes missed by mammography.
Breast MRI, with contrast injection, can find cancers that are not seen on a mammogram or more rarely on breast ultrasound screening. Breast MRI is now indicated in young women at high risk for breast cancer.
Breast MRI is also indicated in patients newly diagnosed with breast cancer particularly if they have dense breast tissue or cancers difficult to see on a mammogram.




What's the difference between 2D and 3D mammograms?





I have breast implants. Is it safe to get a mammogram?


Yes. However, if you have had them recently put in or replaced, you need to wait six months in order to let them fully heal and settle.





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