The American Cancer Society’s surveillance research estimates that in 2015 there will be 4,310 Wisconsin women who develop breast cancer and 720 Wisconsin women will die from breast cancer.
The ACS recommendations that were just published are:
- Women with an average risk of breast cancer-most women-should begin yearly mammograms at age 45.
- Women should be able to start the screening as early as age 40, if they want to. It’s a good idea to start talking to your health care provider at age 40 about when you should begin screening.
- At age 55, women should have mammograms every other year-though women who want to keep having yearly mammograms should be able to do so.
- Regular mammograms should continue for as long as a women is in good health.
- Breast exams, either from a medical provider or self-exams, are no longer recommended.
- The guidelines are for women at average risk for breast cancer. Women at high risk-because of family history, a breast condition, or another reason-need to begin screening earlier and/or more often. Talk to your medical provider to be sure.
Within the new ACS guidelines there are drastic changes regarding physical breast exams and timing of mammography. Every day we find in papers, magazines and the internet “expert” opinions and research on breast cancer screening. The many conflicting opinions cause concern for who do we trust?
The ultimate decision for your health is yours, in consultation with your care provider. Continue to stay educated on your options.
Visit Hudson Hospital & Clinic Imaging Center for more information.