We know that when it comes to staying on top of your breast health, preventative care is key to staying healthy. We are here with the expertise and compassionate care to help you navigate your imaging journey.

Caring for you is our top priority. Our imaging centers offer easy scheduling with flexible appointment times that work with your busy life. We advocate open communication between our experienced imaging staff and your doctor so you can get the exceptional care you need when you need it.

What Is the Purpose of a Mammogram?

A mammogram is an X-ray image of the breast, which doctors use to look for early signs of breast cancer and other breast abnormalities. The imaging method is called mammography. It is used as both a diagnostic and screening tool.

What Happens During a Mammogram?

During a mammogram, a patient stands in front of a special medical X-ray machine while a technologist places the patient's breast on a flat plate. The breast is compressed with a parallel plate called a paddle, which holds it still while the X-ray is being taken. The process only takes a few seconds for each breast. This helps minimize blurring of the X-ray image that can be caused by movement. Compression also evens out the shape of the breast, so that the X-ray can travel a shorter path.

These steps are repeated for the other breast. For some women with breast implants or larger breasts, more images may be needed. The whole procedure generally takes about 20 minutes.

Your breasts may be more sensitive if you are about to have or currently having your period. Inform the technologists at once if you feel any pain. 

3D Mammography Services Offered

3D Mammography, also known as Tomosynthesis, is ideal for women with dense breasts because it gives radiologists a more detailed view of the breast tissue, helping to find smaller cancers earlier. The advanced technology also decreases the number of false positives. There is same day follow-up available if additional imaging is needed, which results also available that day.

What Age Should a Woman Get a Mammogram?

Mammogram guidelines are issued by various medical organizations. Please talk with your healthcare provider about the best screening guidelines for you. For more information, please review the chart below for women with average risk:

  Age to Start Mammography  Age to Stop Mammography  Mammography Interval 
American College of Radiology/Society of Breast Imaging  40* No age limit, tailor to individual health status Annual 
American Cancer Society  45 option to start at age 40 When life expectancy is less than 10 years
Annual 45-54; Every 1 or 2 years 55+
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Offer at 40, not later than 50 Age 75, then shared decision making Every 1 or 2 years 
American Medical Association
40 Not Stated  Annual 
American Society of Breast Surgeons
40 When life expectancy is less than 10 years Annual  
National Comprehensive Cancer Network 40 Upper age limit for screening is not yet established   Annual
U.S. Preventive  Services Task Force
50 74 years  Every 2 years 

* African American, Hispanic and Asian women have peak incidence of breast cancer in their 40s and should begin screening at least by age 40.

Insurances Accepted

We accept a variety of insurance plans. For questions about your coverage, please contact your insurance provider directly.

Breast Cancer Risk Factors


Being a woman is the greatest risk factor in developing breast cancer. This is because the women’s breasts are constantly changing and growing due to the hormones estrogen and progesterone. Men can also develop breast cancer, but the risks are significantly low because their breasts don’t have much activity.


The risk of developing breast cancer increases with age. Most breast cancers are diagnosed after the age 50. When in your 30s, the risk of getting breast cancer is 1 in 228 or 44%. As you age, the percentage rate increases. The greatest mortality reduction, the most lives saved and the most life years gained occur with yearly mammography starting at age 40. Emanuel Medical Center in Turlock, California, has advanced digital mammography equipment that not only captures more detailed images of the breast, but it does so during a shorter, more comfortable exam than traditional mammograms.

Genetic Mutation

Breast cancer is thought to be hereditary, which means it results directly from gene mutations from parent/s. BRCA1 or BRCA2 are two different genes and the most common cause of hereditary breast cancer. In normal circumstances, these genes help in producing proteins which repair DNA damage. However, mutations of these genes can cause abnormal cell growth which causes cancer.

Reproductive History

Early menstrual period, before age 12, and late menopausal period, after age 55, causes women to be exposed to hormones longer. This increases the risk for breast cancer.

Dense Breasts

Breasts are made up of fatty, fibrous and glandular tissues. Denser breasts means that the breast has more fibrous and glandular tissues than fatty tissues. This makes the breast appear denser in mammograms. Women with dense breasts have a higher risk of about 1.5 to 2 times than that of the women with average breast density. Denser breasts are also harder to examine in mammograms than average density breasts.

History of Breast Cancer or Certain Noncancerous Breast Diseases

Women who have had breast cancer once have an increased risk of getting breast cancer a second time. Noncancerous diseases that can increase risk for breast cancer includes atypical hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma.

Family History of Breast Cancer and Ovarian Cancer

The risk of developing breast cancer increases when a female first-degree relative or multiple females in the family tree have breast cancer. A male first-degree relative with breast cancer also can increase the risk of having breast cancer.

Previous Treatments Using Radiation Therapy

People who are treated with radiation therapy in the chest for another cancer increases the risk of developing breast cancer. Teenagers or young adults who are treated with radiation therapy when the breast is still developing are at a significantly higher risk of developing cancer. Women who received radiation therapy after 40 do not have an increased risk of developing breast cancer.

Drug diethylstilbestrol (DES) Exposure

The drug diethylstilbestrol (DES), an estrogen-like drug, was given to pregnant women in the 1940s to early 1970s because it was known to lessen the risk of miscarriage. Women who took this drug have a slightly higher risk of getting breast cancer.


White women have a slightly higher risk of developing breast cancer than African-American women.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Pregnancy and breastfeeding reduces the number of menstrual cycles in a lifetime, which reduces the risk of getting breast cancer. Changes and growth of the breasts are connected with the hormones estrogen and progesterone. For women who breastfeed, the risk lowers especially if they continue to breastfeed in 1.5 to 2 years. Emanuel Medical Center offers the latest advancements in the detection of breast cancer. Even though the incidence of breast cancer increases substantially around age 40 and even earlier for high-risk women, there is no established age for women to stop screening. Women should continue breast cancer mammography screening as long as they are healthy and have the desire to remain so.

Breast Cancer Risk Factors You Can Change

Weight/Diet Fat

tissues are the source of estrogen after menopause. Having higher fat tissues means having higher estrogen levels, which can increase the risk of breast cancer.


The American Cancer Society suggests 45-60 minutes of exercise five or more days a week. Engaging in physical activity regularly decreases the risk of getting breast cancer.

Alcohol Consumption

Alcohol limits the liver’s ability to control blood levels of the hormone estrogen, which increases the risk of breast cancer.


Smoking is associated with a small increase in developing breast cancer.

Recent Oral Contraceptive Use

Recent oral contraceptive use increases the risk of developing breast cancer. Women who stopped using oral contraceptives more than 10 years ago do not have any breast cancer risk.

Stress and Anxiety

There is no clear proof that stress and anxiety increase the risk of getting breast cancer, but they can affect the quality of life. A better quality of life helps strengthen the immune system, which decreases the risk for a number of diseases.

Breast Cancer Risk Factors with Unclear Effects

Chemicals in the Environment

In theory, chemicals in the environment that have estrogen-like properties increase the risk of breast cancer. These substances are found on plastics, cosmetics, personal care products, pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Research about the connection of these substances and breast cancer is still ongoing.

Night Shift Work

People who work at night might have higher risks of developing breast cancer. This is still an active area of research, but in theory, because of the inconsistency of the melatonin production may increase the risk for developing breast cancer.

Being Taller

Taller women have greater risk of developing breast cancer than short women. The reasons are not clear, though it may have to do with nutrition, growth and hormonal and genetic factors. Early detection and lifestyle changes may reduce the risk of disease and offer time to treat it effectively. Screening tests are done to detect potential health disorders or diseases in people who do not have any symptoms. Our staff at Emanuel Medical Center is happy to be able to serve all of your breast health needs in Turlock, California.

Request a Mammogram

By submitting this form you agree to receive periodic health-related information and updates. We welcome your comments, questions, and suggestions. We cannot give you medical advice via e - mail. To discuss any medical symptoms or conditions contact your physician or other healthcare professional. In the case of emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room immediately. Information on this page is secure. We value your privacy.

Breast Cancer Quiz

How much do you know about breast cancer? Could you be at risk?

When you visit the Ruby E. Bergman Women’s Diagnostic Center, you benefit from:

  • State-of-the-art digital mammography equipment for breast cancer screenings
  • Nurturing, compassionate staff
  • Variety of services, including aspirations, ultrasound-guided core biopsies and pre-operative wire localizations
  • Accredited mammography and breast ultrasound facility


  • Bone Density
  • 3D mammography / Tomosynthesis
  • Breast ultrasound
  • Digital diagnostic mammography
  • Digital screening mammography
  • PET/CT imaging
  • Stereotactic-guided core breast biopsy
  • Ultrasound-guided breast cyst aspiration
  • Ultrasound-guided core breast biopsy and fine needle aspiration
  • Wire localization procedure

Monday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Tuesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Wednesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Thursday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Friday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed

Call 911 if you have a medical emergency

Our Services