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MRI's high false positive rate has little impact on women's choice of preventive mastectomy
Date:3/25/2008

eference for prophylactic mastectomy opted for it after a positive scan than did women without such prior intention. We found that women with a mother with breast cancer were more likely to have a preference for mastectomy.

She said personal beliefs and the psychological impact of womens family medical histories seemed to be of major importance in womens decision-making process. There are very few data available about how women decide upon prophylactic mastectomy. Both genetic counselling and breast cancer surveillance are events in the entire process of decision-making, but appear to have a limited impact.

However, the fact that a false positive MRI result has little impact on a womans choice of prophylactic mastectomy may indicate that she has made a well-balanced decision on this subject.

The researchers say that while the pros and cons of prophylactic mastectomy for BRCA mutation carriers remain controversial, with the effects on length and quality of life largely unknown, physicians should give detailed and unbiased information on the different treatments available and the breast cancer risk, including the number of malignancies that are not identified during breast cancer surveillance.

Dr Hoogerbrugge said: It is important to give BRCA mutation carriers correct risk information for the decision process, because preventive surgery is irreversible.

She concluded: This study has made me realise that for women at high hereditary risk of breast cancer, accurate detection techniques are of the utmost importance, even at the cost of a high false positive rate because most women can cope with a false positive MRI result.


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Contact: Emma Mason
wordmason@mac.com
07-711-296-986
European Society for Medical Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

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