Which patients benefit the most from a screening mammography exam?

Updated: Oct 17, 2016
  • Author: Nagwa Dongola, MD, FRCR; Chief Editor: Peter Eby, MD  more...
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Answer

Research has shown that regular mammograms may decrease the risk of late-stage breast cancer in women 80 years of age and older. [2, 3]

Some studies suggest that mammography screening should not just be based on age and family history of breast cancer but also on breast density, history of breast biopsy, and beliefs about the benefits and risks of the screening. [6] However, only 10-25% of all breast cancers occur in the high-risk population. Delayed or less frequent screening of the 75-90% of the United States population at average risk of developing breast cancer would result in late detection and many unnecessary deaths.


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