Radiology & Imaging

Does MRI screening benefit women with extremely dense breasts?

(HealthDay)—Health experts already know that women with extremely dense breasts don't get the same benefit from mammography as women without very dense breast tissue. But what hasn't been clear is if MRI screening might ...

Oncology & Cancer

Cancer yield similar for dense breast ultrasound after DM, DBT

(HealthDay)—There is no significant difference in breast cancer detection rates with dense breast ultrasound screening following digital mammography (DM) versus digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT), according to a study recently ...

Radiology & Imaging

3-D mammography: More breast cancers detected

A pilot trial of 3-D mammography—tomosynthesis—has shown that breast cancer detection, recall for assessment, and screen reading time were each higher than for standard mammography, but it is too soon to tell if more ...

Oncology & Cancer

Foreign-born women in U.S. less likely to have mammograms

(HealthDay)—Regardless of the percentage of lifetime spent in the United States, foreign-born women are less likely to ever have received a mammogram compared with U.S.-born women, according to the Oct. 9 National Health ...

Oncology & Cancer

Researchers study surveillance MRI in breast cancer survivors

The addition of breast MRI to mammography in screening breast cancer survivors for new cancers results in higher cancer detection rates, but also more biopsies that are benign, according to a large study published in the ...

Oncology & Cancer

Cancer screening less likely among current smokers

(HealthDay)—Current smokers are less likely to receive guideline-concordant screening studies for breast, prostate, and colorectal cancer versus never smokers, according to a study published online May 17 in JAMA Network ...

Oncology & Cancer

New recommendations developed for breast cancer screening

(HealthDay)—New recommendations have been developed for breast cancer screening based on a life-years-gained model; the American Society of Breast Surgeons (ASBrS) official statement was published online May 3.

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Mammography

Mammography is the process of using low-energy-X-rays (usually around 30 kVp) to examine the human breast and is used as a diagnostic and a screening tool. The goal of mammography is the early detection of breast cancer, typically through detection of characteristic masses and/or microcalcifications. Most doctors believe that mammography reduces deaths from breast cancer, although a minority do not.

In many countries routine mammography of older women is encouraged as a screening method to diagnose early breast cancer. In 2009, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommended that women with no risk factors have screening mammographies every 2 years between age 50 and 74. They found that the information was insufficient to recommend for or against screening between age 40 and 49 or above age 74. Altogether clinical trials have found a relative reduction in breast cancer mortality of 20%. Some doctors believe that mammographies do not reduce deaths from breast cancer, or at least that the evidence does not demonstrate it.

Like all x-rays, mammograms use doses of ionizing radiation to create images. Radiologists then analyze the image for any abnormal findings. It is normal to use lower energy X-rays (typically Mo-K) than those used for radiography of bones.

At this time, mammography along with physical breast examination is the modality of choice for screening for early breast cancer. Ultrasound, ductography, positron emission mammography (PEM), and magnetic resonance imaging are adjuncts to mammography. Ultrasound is typically used for further evaluation of masses found on mammography or palpable masses not seen on mammograms. Ductograms are still used in some institutions for evaluation of bloody nipple discharge when the mammogram is non-diagnostic. MRI can be useful for further evaluation of questionable findings as well as for screening pre-surgical evaluation in patients with known breast cancer to detect any additional lesions that might change the surgical approach, for instance from breast-conserving lumpectomy to mastectomy. New procedures, not yet approved for use in the general public, including breast tomosynthesis may offer benefits in years to come.

Breast self-examination (BSE) was once promoted as a means of finding cancer at a more curable stage, however, it has been shown to be ineffective, and is no longer routinely recommended by health authorities for general use. Awareness of breast health and familiarity with one's own body is typically promoted instead of self-exams.

Mammography has a false-negative (missed cancer) rate of at least 10 percent. This is partly due to dense tissues obscuring the cancer and the fact that the appearance of cancer on mammograms has a large overlap with the appearance of normal tissues.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA