Breast screening and imaging
The unit uses the latest technology to detect breast cancer as early as possible and to provide a quality service to all patients who attend. We have two mammography rooms — one is especially suited for disabled patients in a wheelchair. Our specialist mammographers are fully trained in using the equipment and making the patients visit as comfortable as possible.
The type of imaging used by the breast screening and imaging department:
Mammography - a special x-ray picture of the breast
Ultrasound - an ultrasound scan which is a painless test, that uses sound waves to create images of organs and structures inside your body, in this case, the breast
Biopsy - a biopsy in which a small sample of tissue is removed from the breast, under local anaesthetic. The sample of tissue is then examined by our pathologists to look for abnormal cells (malignant or benign)
Breast Screening Programme
The National Breast Screening Programme calls women for mammography between the ages of 50 and 71 every three years. Women will receive an invitation to attend screening as long as they are registered with a GP.
Eligible women, aged from 50 to their 71st birthday, receive an invitation letter explaining:
- the programme
- the benefits and risks of breast screening
Women do not always receive an invitation when they turn 50. They can expect their invitation within three years of their 50th birthday.
Women cannot walk in and request breast screening unless they are 71 or over when they can request screening every three years.
Breast Screening for Medway and North West Kent is run by the Medway Breast Screening Service on 01634 825036 firstname.lastname@example.org
Screening mainly operates from mobile screening units at Gravesend, Dartford, Swanley, Medway Towns, Sittingbourne and Sheerness. The mobile units are in each area for approximately six to nine months. Screening is also carried out at the Breast Screening Unit at Medway Hospital.
If any further assessment is required you will be invited to attend the Breast Screening Unit at Medway Hospital; here furthers x-rays, ultrasound and sometimes a biopsy may be performed.
More information regarding breast screening can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/topic/population-screening-programmes/breast
To find out more about the Breast Screening Programme in Kent and Medway, and what to expect at your appointment, watch the short video below.
The charity Breast Cancer Now has produced a video about being breast aware, what breast cancer is, the NHS breast screening programme and risk factors. It is available to watch in 13 different languages, including British Sign Language (BSL), on YouTube here.