Breast screening (mammogram)

NHS breast screening checks use X-rays to look for cancers that are too small to see or feel.

Anyone registered with a GP as female will be invited for NHS breast screening every 3 years between the ages of 50 and 71. You’ll get a letter in the post inviting you.

When you’ll be invited

You’ll automatically get your first invite for breast screening between the ages of 50 and 53. Then you’ll be invited every 3 years until you turn 71.

If you’re a trans man, trans woman or are non-binary you may be invited automatically, or you may need to talk to your GP surgery or call the local breast screening service to ask for an appointment.

You need to be registered with a GP surgery to be invited for breast screening.

Non-urgent advice: If you missed an appointment

If you were invited for breast screening but missed or did not book an appointment, you can contact your local NHS breast screening service to book now.
You can still book even if you were invited weeks or months ago.

How to decide if you want breast screening

Regular breast screening can find breast cancer before you notice any signs or symptoms.

Anyone can get breast cancer. This includes women, men, trans and non-binary people.

It’s the most common type of cancer in the UK.

The chance of getting breast cancer increases as you get older. Most breast cancers are diagnosed in women over 50 years old.

Things to help when booking your appointment


  • ask someone else to book the appointment for you if that is more comfortable for you
  • ask for an appointment at the beginning or end of a clinic to give you more privacy and time to talk to the mammographer
  • tell them you want to have someone with you – such as a carer, someone to interpret for you, a friend, a family member or another member of staff (chaperone)
  • tell the staff your pronouns, if you would like to

Your breast screening results

Your breast screening (mammogram) results will be posted to you, usually within 2 weeks of your appointment.

Quote / Testimonial:
Try not to worry if it takes longer to get your results letter. You can call the breast screening service to see if they have any updates.

It does not mean anything is wrong, and most people will have a normal result.

Videos explaining breast cancer screening

Dr Cartmill talks about Breast Cancer Screening

Dr Mahmood talks about Breast Cancer Screening in Urdu

How to check your breasts

What is breast screening?