Mammograms (Who Needs Them?)
The controversy about screening mammograms continues. (Brief point of information: Screening mammograms are those given to women who have no history and no known problem, "just" coming in for the annual exam. Diagnostic mammograms are what we get because we have a personal history; they are also given to women who have a suspicious lump or area.) You will recall that the U. S. Preventative Services Task Force's recommendation in 2009 that mammograms should be given less frequently set off a fire storm of distress. This Health Day article is about a new study that takes issue with another recent recommendation that women in their 40s, who are not at high risk, don't need annual exams.
Here is the beginning and then a link:
Many Breast Cancer Patients in Their 40s Aren't 'HighRisk': Study Researchers favor annual mammograms even with no family history
By Kathleen Doheny
THURSDAY, May 3 (HealthDay News) More than half of women in their 40s diagnosed with breast cancer after a routine mammogram had no family history of the disease, finds a new study that may add to the debate over the timing of breast cancer screening.
The researchers say their results point to the value of annual screening mammograms for women 40 to 49. But others remain unconvinced.
Family history usually means a firstdegree relative with the disease (parent, sibling or child). Of those without family history who were found to have breast cancer, "64 percent of these women had invasive disease," said researcher Dr. Stamatia Destounis, a radiologist at Elizabeth Wende Breast Care Center and a clinical associate professor at the University of Rochester in New York.
Destounis was to present her findings at the American Roentgen Ray Society annual meeting in Vancouver on Thursday.