A recent Harvard medical study advised that women should get mammograms regularly before 50 years old. The study looked at 7,301 breast cancer cases over 9 years, showing that the majority of women that have died due to breast cancer are under the age of 50 and 65% of them never had a mammogram. The study concluded that Women should begin getting mammogram test performed regularly starting at age 40. However, other studies have claimed that mammograms do not prevent breast cancer deaths.
The facts on breast cancer are as follows:
1. In 1969, 50% of women who had breast cancer, died 12.5 years after diagnosis, in 1990 to 1999 that number decreased to 9.3%.
2. A study by the Mayo clinic in 2013 showed that women in their 40s participating in mammographies declined by 6%.
3. From 1990-1999, 8% of women died of breast cancer (out of 7,301 cases), 5% of women died without having a mammogram.
4. Studies show mammogram testing cause stress in women.
5. 2012 study shows that 1/3 of women were diagnosed with breast cancer that was not life threatening.
6. 2012 study identified that 1 million women may have been overdiagnosed, which means they were needlessly treated.
7. Women with certain genes are at high risk of getting breast cancer.
8. Doctors are divided on the issue of how many lives mammograms save. Identifying that many types of breast cancers that younger women get, spread too quickly to save the woman even if the cancer is detected.
9. The American Cancer Society recommends women get a mammogram every year starting in their 40s.
Did the study come to the right conclusion? Does the information create a clear understanding of what should be done? Is there additional information that could make the risk of breast cancer more clear?
Article Reference: New salvo in mammogram wars says young women should be screened – Maggie Fox – NBC News – September 9 2013 –http://www.nbcnews.com/health/
Anne-Gerard Flynn, The Republican, September 09, 2013 at 5:11 PM
Mammograms before 50 advised by Harvard study
Harvard Medical School Study Published:
Webb, M. L., Cady, B., Michaelson, J. S., Bush, D. M., Calvillo, K. Z., Kopans, D. B. and Smith, B. L. (2013), A failure analysis of invasive breast cancer. Cancer. doi: 10.1002/cncr.28199