A breast ultrasound is a safe, non-invasive exam that uses sound waves to see the inside of the breast. No compression is necessary.
It is performed in conjunction with mammography, especially in the case of dense breasts, and for patients with breast implants, since an ultrasound can distinguish between solid and fluid-filled lumps (cysts). Cysts are very common and completely benign; about half of all women have some cysts in their breasts at some point.
In women under 30 years of age, a breast ultrasound is often used as the first diagnostic exam before a mammogram.