Mammography can be screening, performed to detect any breast lesions early, even before the patient or doctor can notice them, or it can be diagnostic, used to determine any changes in relation to previous routine or screening exams. When it's just a screening test, images are taken of each breast from two different angles, while when it's a diagnostic mammogram it can include additional images or be accompanied by other complementary tests.
With the advance of technology, digital (computerized) mammography has emerged. This exam is similar to the conventional one in that it uses X-rays to produce the images, but the system converts the image into a digital photo that can be viewed on the computer monitor. With this new technology, exams have become faster and benefit both patients and radiologists, who have the possibility of handling the image on the computer.