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January 13, 2010

Benefits of Screening Mammography

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: American Radiology Services, Johns Hopkins Green Spring, Lutherville, Maryland.

JAMA. 2010;303(2):168-169. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.1993

Breast cancer is a leading cause of premature death for women in their 40s, and mammographic screening significantly reduces the risk of death due to breast cancer. The latter was the conclusion of the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) meta-analysis of the randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of screening mammography.1 The USPSTF concluded, however, that the absolute benefit from routine mammographic screening of women in their 40s was too low to offset the harms. As a woman in her 40s, and a radiologist specializing in breast imaging, I find their conclusions puzzling.

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