New Study Shows Additional Benefits of Screening Mammography
Not only can a routine mammogram save lives, screening mammograms for younger women may save a world of aches in terms of treatment. According to a recent study, women aged 40-49 diagnosed with breast cancer who had undergone routine screening mammography had a reduced need for chemotherapy. This is great news – not only can screening save lives but it may reduce the need for chemotherapy and its known risks and side effects.
Screening mammograms, as you may recall us discussing, are different than diagnostic mammograms.
Diagnostic mammograms are performed to evaluate symptoms related to the breast. Breast symptoms that may prompt a trip to the doctor and possibly to your radiologist include feeling a lump or thickening, breast discharge, any persistent change in your breast or nipple or breast pain among others.
Screening mammography is performed on women without any breast symptoms to search for signs of breast cancer. Screening mammograms should be done annually after the age of 40. Screening mammography is able to find signs of breast cancer when no symptoms are present. Screening mammography has been shown to save lives. Screening mammography can find cancers when they are smaller and at a lower stage, and as this study has shown may reduce the need for treatment with chemotherapy.
Our goal and wish is for breast cancer to become a thing of the past. But the battle is ongoing. Having a yearly mammogram from age 40 on is the best step on your way to your best breast health.
Originally published 3/4/14 on mammographykc.com.