Mammography: the Flatter the Better

Mammograms are crazy.  How is this actually the best way to see if I have cancer or where it is?  The mammography technician actually said to me that the flatter we can get the breast, the better the image.  This she said with a bright smile on her face.  Like I should be excited to have my breasts smashed into these cold, metallic plates.  You’re standing there without a top; they take one of your breasts and lay it on a cold metal plate and then tell you to get as close as you can get.  I tried to point out that I couldn’t get any closer to the metal bar because my breast bone was in the way.  Again and again; flatter and flatter; both sides; they went out of the room and would come back in; your neck got in the way, we need to do that series again.  Devastating.  More in a hyperbolic sense than anything.  The tech had this quirky, sweet way about her: just hold still.  As if I could go anywhere, you have my boob in a vice.  Trust me, I’m not moving.  Or “you’re doing great” what else would I be doing?  “This shouldn’t hurt too badly” or “it’s almost over” or “just one more” or “sorry, just a few more” and “you’re doing great; well they make me say that.”  She knew it was terrible, but she still used sunshine.

This is Part 3 of the story. Click Cancer Journey to read all of it.