A new study conducted by Harvard Medical School suggests that breast cancer deaths are higher among younger women who don’t receive regular mammograms. Currently, the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that women get mammograms every other year beginning at age 50.
The American Cancer Society recommends that women begin getting regular annual screenings from age 40.
Research reviewed over 7,000 diagnosed cases in the Boston area from 1990-1999 and were maintained until 2007. Over 70% of the 609 women who died from breast cancer didn’t receive regular screenings. Nearly half of those who died were under 50.
Over-diagnosis is risk at the opposite end of the spectrum. Research conducted in a separate 2012 study yielded that up to 25% of breast cancer diagnoses would not cause noticeable effects of cancer during their lifetime.
Knowledge is power. Get screened regularly. While there are conflicting views and opinions on the topic, if you have a family history of cancers, be cautious and begin annual screenings at an earlier age. At the same time, question your diagnosis if you have doubts.