We have information about getting your mammogram appointment, including if you need an interpreter, have breast implants or have had breast cancer.

Your breast screening letter

All women of breast screening age who are registered with a GP will get a letter inviting them for breast screening. This is an appointment to have an x-ray of the breasts called a mammogram.

In your appointment letter, you will be given a date and time to go to a local breast screening unit. This may be in a hospital or in a mobile unit. If you cannot attend the appointment you have been given, call the breast screening unit to ask for another time. If you think you will need help with travel costs to and from your appointment, speak to the breast screening staff. The contact number will be on the appointment letter.

You will get a leaflet with your letter explaining what will happen at your appointment. You can ask to have the leaflet sent to you in:

  • a different language
  • large print
  • audio.

You can also ask Macmillan to translate our information into British Sign Language (BSL).

See also

If you need an interpreter

If you need an interpreter at your appointment, contact your screening unit before you go to arrange this. Some units will allow a female family member or friend to translate information for you. But others prefer you to use an interpreter.

If you have breast implants

If you have breast implants, you will still be invited for screening. This is because you still have breast tissue around the implant. You should contact your breast screening unit to tell them about your implants when you get your invitation. Your appointment may take a few minutes longer. This is so the person doing the scan can make sure they get a clear picture of the breasts.

The pressure applied to the breasts during breast screening is unlikely to damage your implants. Mammograms for breast screening do not check for problems with your implants. If you think there is a problem with them, let your GP know.

If you have been treated for breast cancer

If you have been treated for breast cancer, you will still be invited for screening. If you are still having follow-up mammograms at the hospital, you do not need to go for screening. But let the breast screening unit know if you are not going to the screening appointment. If you are no longer having regular mammograms at the hospital where you had treatment, you should go for screening when invited.

After your follow-up at the hospital finishes:

  • if you had one breast removed, you will need to have the other breast screened
  • if you had both breasts removed, you do not need breast screening, even if you have implants or reconstruction with your own tissue.