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Lives Will Be Lost With Proposed Changes to Mammography Guidelines
Date:11/17/2009

treat what isn't diagnosed.
  • The proposed guideline changes would mean that many breast cancers would be diagnosed at a later stage, making it harder to become cancer-free. Later-stage diagnoses result in more women with metastatic disease (that has spread to other parts of the body) and more women with large or multiple cancers requiring mastectomy (too late for breast-conserving treatments).
  • The proposed guideline changes would mean that younger women would be diagnosed later. Breast cancer in younger women tends to be more aggressive, so early diagnosis and treatment is more critical for them. It is the lives and futures of younger women that would be lost if the proposed changes are adopted.
  • Expressed as nameless, faceless numbers, the 3% decrease in breast cancer survival might seem like an acceptable trade-off when compared to the economic benefits of changing breast cancer screening policies. But breast cancer affects a very large number of women, so 3% of that number is not insignificant. The reality is that more women -- mothers, daughters, sisters, grandmothers, and aunts -- will die each year from breast cancer, which is neither reasonable nor acceptable.

    We at Breastcancer.org encourage medical professionals and everyone affected in any way by breast cancer to raise their voices against these surprising and dramatic proposed changes in the guidelines for breast cancer screening. Our belief is that lives should be saved, not lost, and our commitment to you is that we will continue to strongly advocate for policies that support this fundamental mission.

    Marisa C. Weiss, M.D.

    President and Founder, Breastcancer.org

    Director of Breast Radiation Oncology, Director of Breast Health Outreach

    Lankenau Hospital

    Maxine Jochelson, M.D.

    Director of Radiology

    Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center

    Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Cent
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    SOURCE Breastcancer.org
    Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
    All rights reserved

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