Women With Dense Breasts Will Have To Look Beyond Ultrasound For Useful Supplemental Breast Cancer Screening

Supplemental ultrasound screening for all U.S. women with dense breasts would substantially increase healthcare costs with little improvement in overall health, according to senior author Anna Tosteson, ScD, at Dartmouth Hitchcock’s Norris Cotton Cancer Center and The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice.

In a study recently released in the Annals of Internal Medicine, Tosteson and colleagues, including lead author Brian Sprague, MD, provide evidence on the benefits and harms of adding ultrasound to breast cancer screening.

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Radiologists’ Visual Search Patterns Affected By Breast Density

A new study suggests that radiologists are more attentive during interpretation with the presence of dense breast tissue regions. “If we wish to optimize viewing algorithms or design appropriate training strategies, the impact of breast density on radiologists’ behaviors needs to be better understood,” wrote Al Mousa and the research team.

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Regular Mammograms Starting At Age 40 Reduce Breast Cancer Deaths

Thirty percent of nearly 40,000 women who will die from breast cancer in the next year could have been helped if they had received regular mammograms starting at age 40. A public service campaign called Mammography Saves Lives is encouraging women to find an accredited mammography center near them for regular screenings. According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 300,000 new cases of breast cancer will are diagnosed each year.

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Mammography Reduces Late Stage Breast Cancer

A study published in Cancer found that the number of people diagnosed with advanced-stage breast cancer has decreased by 37 percent since health care providers begain using mammography. Researchers from the University of Michigan produced the report. The study also found that the number of early-stage diagnoses increased 48 percent.

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Mammography in Breast Cancer

A woman’s chance of developing invasive breast cancer at some time in her life is approximately 1 in 8 (12%). It is one of the leading causes of cancer mortality among women in the United States.

Because of early detection, intervention, and postoperative treatment, breast cancer mortality has been decreasing. The use of mammography for screening has largely contributed to early detection.

Special Offer: Get $10.00 Off your X-RAY CE purchase through October with coupon code “Komen” at checkout! X-RAY CE will donate $10.00 to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation for every Komen coupon used during the month of October! Browse our selection of Home Study and E-Courses!

A Joint Statement from the American College of Radiology and Society of Breast Imaging states that, “It is well known that mammography has reduced the breast cancer death rate in the United States by 30 percent since 1990 ─ hardly a small benefit.”

Mammography is the preferred examination for breast cancer, especially in women older than 40 years, the age group with the highest incidence. Some studies have shown that mammography may be particularly beneficial for women who are 80 years of age and older.

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Brest Density Laws

States are passing laws requiring mammography centers to tell women about their breast density so they can consider more imaging tests, such as ultrasound and MRI.

Dense breast tissue makes finding cancer on a mammogram more difficult. It may also increase the chance of developing breast cancer.

Bills are pending in 19 states, and a federal law has been introduced.

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October is Breast Cancer Awareness

October is breast cancer awareness month, and there are several
organizations that you can donate to such as the Susan G. Komen Foundation.
“When it’s caught in its earliest stages, breast cancer is 98 percent
survivable,” says Laura Farmer Sherman, the executive director of Susan G.
Komen in San Diego.

On Tuesday, the San Diego Chargers sponsored an event at Qualcomm Stadium
providing free mammograms for more than 90 uninsured women that exceeded all
expectations reaching full capacity within an hour.

X-Ray CE, provider in continuing education for imaging professionals, is
donating $10 for every order it receives during the month of October when
customers use coupon code “KOMEN” during online checkout. X-Ray CE’s ASRT
approved Home Study and E-courses fulfill continuing education requirements
(visit http://xrayce.com).

Organizations you can donate to:

National Breast Cancer Foundation: http://www.nationalbreastcancer.org
Susan G. Koman Breast Cancer Foundation: http://komen.org
American Breast Cancer Foundation: http://www.abcf.org

Mammograms Still Number One In Breast Cancer Detection

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and annual mammogram screening is still the best, early detection method for women in their 40s and beyond says Dr. Michael Hallenbeck , radiologist at SNMH Diagnostic Imaging Center.

X-rays usually have no side effects in the typical diagnostic range for a mammogram exam, and the benefit of an accurate diagnosis far outweighs this risk, says Hallenbeck.

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Report: Earlier Mammography Screening is Better in Younger Women

A study of 7,300 breast cancer patients showed that more than two-thirds of breast cancer deaths occurred in younger women with no history of mammography or with intervals of two years or more in between mammograms. Unscreened women accounted for 71% of breast cancer deaths, and the median age at diagnosis was 49, compared with 72 for women who died of other causes. According to Blake Cady, MD of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, the findings support mammogram screening before age 50.

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Two Studies: Using Ultrasonography with Mammography

Advances in Ultrasonography (US) technology allow confident characterization of not only benign cysts but also benign and malignant solid masses.

According to Regina J. Hooley, MD, Leslie M. Scoutt, MD, and Liane E. Philpotts, Md from the Department of Diagnostic Radiology at Yale University School of Medicine, having knowledge of current and emerging US technology, along with meticulous scanning techniques is imperative for image optimization and diagnosis.

The ability to synthesize breast US findings with multiple imaging modalities and clinical information is also necessary to ensure the best patient care.

The full report is available in the September issue of Radiology.

In a separate study, findings were that BI-RADS 3 breast lesions had a lower cancer rate when using ultrasound, since more biopsies must be performed, most of which turn out to be negative.

“Supplemental ultrasound screening increases cancer detection beyond mammography alone, but may also result in an increased number of additional test,” says lead research Richard G. Barr, MD, PhD, and professor of radiology at the Northeast Ohio Medical University in Youngstown, Ohio.

“BI-RADS 3 lesions are common on screening ultrasound and often lead to unnecessary biopsies and additional imaging, causing substantial cost and anxiety for patients,” said Barr.

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