What You Really Need to Know about Cancer

Friday, December 5, 2014

Understanding BIRADS categories in your Mammogram Report

Understanding BIRADS categories in your Mammogram Report
Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BIRADS) is standard way of describing a mammogram findings and results. This system is developed by
American College of Radiology in collaboration with many health care groups. This system is mainly divided into major 7 categories from 0-6. This standard ensure doctors to have a better follow up of suspicious findings.

Category 0: Incomplete X-ray

Category 0 indicates that the x-ray not clear and possible abnormality may not be clearly seen or further imaging is needed in different views including compression, magnification, special mammographic views.

Category 1: Complete X-ray

Good News! This Indicates that there are no abnormalities, breast is normal, no masses, no suspicious calcification, no distorted structure. The mammogram is negative, in other word nothing bad was found. But make sure to continue with your routine screening.

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Category 2: Non-cancerous

Category 2 means your mammogram is negative. But the concerning doctor may consider the findings as to be benign, such as benign calcifications, cysts,  lymph nodes in the breast, or calcified fibroadenomas. So, this ensures that the doctor who sees the mammogram report will never get misinterpreted the results.

Category 3: May be Benign, follow up is suggested

Understanding BIRADS categories in your Mammogram Report
This category is considered as gray zone. Category 3 means your mammogram is probably normal. But have high chance of non-cancerous of benign tumor. Probably 2% of chances of having cancer. But you will be asked to have a follow up after 6 months and if you have a family history of breast cancer, your doctor will advise you to undergo further investigations.

Category 4: Suspicious abnormalities

Category 4 indicates that approximately 20-30% chance of having cancer cells or tumor in the breast. But the findings definitely do not look like cancer. So, further investigations are required. Your doctor will advise you to undergo biopsy for further rule out and diagnosis. This category is divided into further 3 categories

  1. 4A: Report with a low suspicion of being malignant
  2. 4B: report with an intermediate suspicion of being malignant
  3. 4C: finding of moderate concern of being malignant, but not as high as Category 5

Category 5: Highly suggestive to Malignancy

This category indicates that you’re having at least 95% chance of having breast cancer. Biopsy and other related investigations are highly recommended.

Category 6: Proven Malignancy

This category in mammogram findings are proven to malignant or cancer. In other word, you have already been diagnosed for breastcancer


  1. Thank you for stopping by, hope you enjoyed the article


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