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New mammogram recommendations for breastfeeding mothers

New mammogram recommendations for breastfeeding mothers

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — If you are at a high risk for breast cancer, providers are now urging women to get screened even if they are pregnant or breastfeeding.

This is a passionate topic for me as I have a strong family history of breast cancer. My mom and my grandmother both had breast cancer in their 30s. So at the age of 30, I began getting mammograms and have been getting them yearly ever since.

As I entered my 40s I started having children and my medical team wanted to make sure I didn’t miss these important screenings.

After my first child was born I breastfeed for about 6 months. I remember pumping in the car minutes before my mammogram. The tech made a specific note in my chart that I was breast feeding and to me the wording felt like I maybe had gone too early after childbirth. Should I have waited a few more months?


After my second child was born in March of 2023, I was due for a mammogram in December of that year. I was still breast feeding so I waited. Once my doctor found out I was several months overdue she was kind but urged me to get in as soon as possible. She even wrote a note in my chart for the radiologist I was still breastfeeding.

New recommendations out in the fall of 2023 suggest women who are high risk no longer wait to get mammograms even if they are breast feeding.

WISH-TV medical expert Dr. Janel Gordon joined Daybreak on Thursday for our “Morning Checkup” segment. She shared women are having babies later in life and are also having back to back pregnancies which means the older guidelines would mean missing this screenings.

Dr. Gordon recommends pumping or nursing before your mammogram to empty your breast as much as possible.


You can get a mammogram while you’re pregnant. I was 5 months pregnant with my second child when I went in for a breast ultrasound. My medical team was keeping an eye on one specific spot. The radiologist tech offered doing a mammogram and said she would put a shield over my belly if I was concerned about radiation.

Dr. Gordon says, “The radiation from a mammogram is very low and it is safe to have while pregnant. A breast MRI is not safe to get while pregnant.”

As always talk to your medical provider to see what works best for your case.

I just got my mammogram and ultrasound last week. It came back all clear! Due to my high risk I will be alternating between mammograms and breast MRI’s so I am screened every 6 months. The hope is if something is suspicious we catch it early.