A galactogram is a special x-ray exam used to evaluate abnormalities in
breast fluid. Galactography uses mammography and an injection of contrast
material to create images of the inside of the breast’s milk ducts.
The breast is composed primarily of three structures: fat, lobules and
ducts that carry milk from the lobule to the nipple. While mammography,
ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can all be used to image
the breast, they do not visualize the breast ducts as clearly as a galactogram.
A galactogram can be used to determine if there is any abnormality of the
duct, a growth inside the duct or blockage of the duct.
In this outpatient procedure, a very fine, hollow plastic tube is inserted
into the breast duct. This allows the radiologist to inject a contrast
material into the breast duct so it can be seen on an x-ray. No sedation
or anesthesia is required for this procedure, and no tissue is removed
for examination during this test.
Common Uses for Galactograms
The most common use of a galactogram is to evaluate a patient who has a
clear or bloody discharge from her nipple and an otherwise normal mammogram.
Conveniently located at the Barnabas Health Ambulatory Care Center in Livingston,
NJ, The Breast Center's goal is to exceed the individual expectations
of each patient, to decrease the stress commonly associated with breast
testing, and to promote breast health and wellness.