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PostPosted: 13 Jan 2016 13:24 
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Clinical Guidelines | 12 January 2016. Ann of Int Med.
Screening for Breast Cancer: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force Recommendation Statement .

The USPSTF reviewed the evidence on the following: effectiveness of breast cancer screening in reducing breast cancer–specific and all-cause mortality, as well as the incidence of advanced breast cancer and treatment-related morbidity; harms of breast cancer screening; test performance characteristics of digital breast tomosynthesis as a primary screening strategy; and adjunctive screening in women with increased breast density.


Population:
This reccommendation applies to asymptomatic women aged 40 years or older who do not have preexisting breast cancer or a previously diagnosed high-risk breast lesion and who are not at high risk for breast cancer because of a known underlying genetic mutation (such as a BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation or other familial breast cancer syndrome) or a history of chest radiation at a young age.

Recommendations:
The USPSTF recommends biennial screening mammography for women aged 50 to 74 years. .

The decision to start screening mammography in women prior to age 50 years should be an individual one. Women who place a higher value on the potential benefit than the potential harms may choose to begin biennial screening between the ages of 40 and 49 years.

The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms of screening mammography in women aged 75 years or older.

The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the benefits and harms of digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) as a primary screening method for breast cancer.
The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms of adjunctive screening for breast cancer using breast ultrasonography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), DBT, or other methods in women identified to have dense breasts on an otherwise negative screening mammogram.

It bases its recommendations on the evidence of both the benefits and harms of the service and an assessment of the balance. The USPSTF does not consider the costs of providing a service in this assessment.

The USPSTF recognizes that clinical decisions involve more considerations than evidence alone. Clinicians should understand the evidence but individualize decision making to the specific patient or situation. Similarly, the USPSTF notes that policy and coverage decisions involve considerations in addition to the evidence of clinical benefits and harms.


G Mohan.


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PostPosted: 16 Jan 2016 11:18 
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There are many reports that argue mammograms were misleading and were not very useful. One study in the British Medical Journal reported in 2014 involving 90,000 women and lasting a quarter-century indicated that death rates from breast cancer and from all causes were the same in women who received the screening and those who did not. Researchers looked at a group of women who had an annual breast exam by a nurse to check for lumps plus a mammogram, and another group who had the nurse’s breast exam alone. The similar death rates in both groups suggested that mammograms did little to help detection.

Of course critics of this report said in the last 20 years or so, devices have improved and become more accurate. The mammograms in the past were analog mammograms, which really only detect breast cancer in three out of a thousand women. Digital mammography has become the standard of care over the last 10 years and is used to detect cancer in six out of a thousand women.


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