Florida mammographer disability training vs needs

Ellen D.S. Lopez, Vijay Vasudevan, Melissa Lanzone, Eva Egensteiner, Elena M. Andresen, Elizabeth M. Hannold, Staci Graff

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: There is currently no minimum required competency for mammographers regarding imaging patients with physical disabilities. Yet, as disability prevalence rates increase, mammographers interact with more women with disabilities at breast imaging facilities. Purpose: To better understand the disability training that mammographers receive and desire, and the advice they would extend to colleagues regarding improving the experience when performing mammography on women with disabilities. Methods: Within the context of a community and academic partnership, in-depth telephone interviews were conducted with 14 mammographers practicing in north central Florida. Grounded theory techniques facilitated analysis for major themes. Results: The extent, content, and delivery of disability training varied among participants. Analysis revealed respondents' personal desires for training focused on positioning to "get the best breast image," while mammographers' advice to colleagues focused on the need to afford patience and respect to the patient. Four identified themes included learning on the job, asking for help, desired training to acquire the best possible image, and advice to other mammographers regarding patience. Conclusion: Mammographers value the disability training they receive as a foundation for continued learning on the job. Training should comprise both technical and social aspects of performing mammography on women with disabilities, including positioning, disability etiquette, and disability advocacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)337-348
Number of pages12
JournalRadiologic technology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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