Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mammogram Screening and Breast Cancer

In 2008, approximately 184,450 new cases of breast cancer was diagnosed in the US, with approximately 41,000 individuals dying from the disease. The average American woman has a one in seven chance of developing breast cancer during her lifetime.
Studies have shown that regular screening of women with no symptoms has decreased the number of women who die from breast cancer by approximately 45 percent.

A woman's chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer is:

from age 30 through age 39 . . . . . . 0.43 percent (often expressed as "1 in 233")
from age 40 through age 49 . . . . . . 1.44 percent (often expressed as "1 in 69")
from age 50 through age 59 . . . . . . 2.63 percent (often expressed as "1 in 38")
from age 60 through age 69 . . . . . . 3.65 percent (often expressed as "1 in 27")


The following is Sloan-Ketterings recommendation that I believe we should follow:
Average Risk Women
Annual clinical breast examination (CBE) beginning at age 25
Annual mammography beginning at age 40
Women should be aware of any changes in their breasts. Monthly breast self-examination beginning at 20 years old is optional.

Women with a Family History of Breast Cancer -- i.e. One or More First-Degree Relative (Parent or Sibling)
CBE every three to six months starting no later than ten years earlier than the age at which the youngest family member was diagnosed with breast cancer
Annual mammography starting ten years prior to the age of the youngest family member with breast cancer (but not earlier than age 25 and not later than age 40)
Consider annual MRI (consult with your physician)
Women should be aware of any changes in their breasts. Monthly breast self-examination beginning at 20 years old is optional.


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