Missing One Routine Mammogram Increases Risk of Breast Cancer Death

Missing One Routine Mammogram Increases Risk of Breast Cancer Death

Researchers said women who skip even one scheduled mammography screening before a breast cancer diagnosis face a significantly higher risk of dying from the cancer. “This is the first time we’ve analyzed the mortality benefit of not just breast cancer screening, but regular breast cancer screening, using such a robust, comprehensive data set,” said Robert Smith, PhD, senior vice president of cancer screening for the American Cancer Society. Analysis showed that participation in the two most recent mammography screening appointments before a breast cancer diagnosis provides a higher protection against breast cancer death than participation in neither or only one examination. According to the Prevent Cancer Foundation, an estimated 35% of Americans missed routine cancer screening due to COVID-19-related fears and service disruptions early in the pandemic. For some women at high risk of breast cancer, annual breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is recommended to accompany mammography, typically starting at age 30.

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