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New Guidelines Say Mammograms at Age 40

January 6, 2010
Written by: , Filed in: Breast Imaging
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Annual mammograms should begin at age 40 for women at average risk for breast cancer and by age 30 for women at high risk, say experts from the American College of Radiology (ACR) and the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI). The recommendations challenge controversial guidelines given earlier by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Last year, the government advisory panel said women don’t need mammograms until age 50, with screening done every two years.

The ACR and SBI findings appear in the January issue of the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

“The significant decrease in breast cancer mortalilty, which amounts to nearly 30 percent since 1990, is a major medical success and is due largely to earlier detection of breast cancer through mammography screening, said study author Carol H. Lee, MD. “For women with the highest risk of developing breast cancer, screening technologies in addition to mammography have been adopted,” Lee said.

The ACR has loudly opposed the mammograms-at-age-50 guidelines since they were announced last fall.

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