Dear mcd44: Microcalcifications are very fine specks of calcium that light up on a mammogram. Sometimes they can be an indication of cancer or precancer. Based on their pattern on the mammogram it gives the radiologist clues as to their cause. For instance microcalcifications that are more scattered are probably due to benign (non-cancerous) causes (such as normal wear and tear on the tissue), a “cluster” of microcalcifications may increase concern that there may be an underlying tumor.
My radiology report from my mammogram came back with a Bi-rad 3 rating. This means probably benign. It said to come back in six months for another mammogram. I had scattered calcifications in my lower left breast quadrant. My family doctor called and said to get a second opinion from a breast surgeon. I did. I had a biopsy at her suggestion and I had early stage breast cancer. I'm just telling you this because whenever a radiology report on a mammogram comes back "probably benign", you should still get a second opinion. It can't hurt.
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