Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Screening mammograms in younger women have low accuracy and detect few cancers

Date:
May 3, 2010
Source:
Journal of the National Cancer Institute
Summary:
Screening mammograms in women under age 40 result in high rates of callbacks and additional imaging tests but low rates of cancer detection, according to a new study.

Screening mammograms in women under age 40 result in high rates of callbacks and additional imaging tests but low rates of cancer detection, according to a study published online May 3 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Related Articles


Many studies have assessed mammography in women over age 40 years, but little is known about its usefulness in younger women. Although screening mammograms are not generally recommended under age 40, about 29% of women between 30 and 40 report having had one.

To determine the accuracy and outcomes of mammograms in younger women, Bonnie C. Yankaskas, Ph..D., from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and colleagues, pooled data from six mammography registries around the country. Their study included 117,738 women who had their first mammogram between the ages of 18 and 39. The researchers followed the women for a year to determine the accuracy of the tests and their cancer detection rates. They analyzed data for both screening mammograms and diagnostic mammograms, which were performed because a woman had a warning sign or symptom, such as a lump.

No cancers were detected in women 25. Among the 73,335 women aged 35-39, the researchers found that screening mammograms had poor accuracy (sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value) and high rates of recall for additional tests. The cancer detection rate in this group was 1.6 cancers per 1,000 women.

For diagnostic mammograms, accuracy was better and the detection rate was 14.3 cancers per 1,000 women aged 35-39.

The authors conclude that in a theoretical population of 10,000 women having a screening mammogram between ages 35 and 39, 1,266 would be called back for further testing, 16 cancers would be detected, and therefore 1,250 women would have false positives.

In this population, they write, "our findings support a need for serious discussion about the appropriateness of mammography in women without the presence of symptoms."

In an editorial, Ned Calonge, M.D., of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, notes that this "landmark descriptive study should inform women and physicians and guide research efforts" on early detection in younger women. He emphasizes that even women in the study with a family history of breast cancer had the same detection and false positive rates as women without a known family history. This calls into question he says, the recommendation of some health groups that women with a family history start screening early.

He concludes that "the study by Yankaskas et al. is a powerful reminder that we must continue to strive for better tests and better treatments…..Furthermore, we should not be satisfied with better detection rates alone. We need evidence that early detection of these cancers translates to improvements in important health outcomes."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Journal of the National Cancer Institute. "Screening mammograms in younger women have low accuracy and detect few cancers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 May 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100503161340.htm>.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute. (2010, May 3). Screening mammograms in younger women have low accuracy and detect few cancers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100503161340.htm
Journal of the National Cancer Institute. "Screening mammograms in younger women have low accuracy and detect few cancers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100503161340.htm (accessed October 26, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Texas Nurse Nina Pham Cured of Ebola

Texas Nurse Nina Pham Cured of Ebola

AFP (Oct. 25, 2014) — An American nurse who contracted Ebola while caring for a Liberian patient in Texas has been declared free of the virus and will leave the hospital. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Toxin-Packed Stem Cells Used To Kill Cancer

Toxin-Packed Stem Cells Used To Kill Cancer

Newsy (Oct. 25, 2014) — A Harvard University Research Team created genetically engineered stem cells that are able to kill cancer cells, while leaving other cells unharmed. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) — IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) — A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins