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Women's Imaging

 

The mammography screening debates have been raging ever since 2009, when the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force began recommending that most women get screened every other year rather than every year and start their screenings at 50 rather than 40. A new study shows that, among women routinely participating in mammography screening, the recommendation has not lengthened the average interval between exam dates. 

Via Radiology, based in Seattle, is the first in the Pacific Northwest to offer a new type of MRI screening for breast cancer patients.

Women seeking information about which plans cover which breast-health services in Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces have been getting a lot of underinformed advice from customer-service reps. As a result, more than a few women have likely been buying plans that won’t meet their needs. 

Compared with breast-cancer patients who have nondense tissue, those with dense tissue are at significantly elevated risk of developing a tumor in the opposite breast. 

Breast imaging practices that have screening recall rates of at least 12 percent but less than 14 percent are in the “sweet spot” for optimal detection of breast cancer. Practices that call back more than 14 percent of screening patients see little incremental benefit, while those that come in under 10 percent risk missing many cancers. 

 

Recent Headlines

Biennial breast-screening recommendation hasn’t moved the interval needle

The mammography screening debates have been raging ever since 2009, when the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force began recommending that most women get screened every other year rather than every year and start their screenings at 50 rather than 40. A new study shows that, among women routinely participating in mammography screening, the recommendation has not lengthened the average interval between exam dates. 

Affordable breast MRI protocol improving detection in women with dense breasts

Via Radiology, based in Seattle, is the first in the Pacific Northwest to offer a new type of MRI screening for breast cancer patients.

Government-run insurance marketplaces often fail to help women choose appropriate plans

Women seeking information about which plans cover which breast-health services in Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces have been getting a lot of underinformed advice from customer-service reps. As a result, more than a few women have likely been buying plans that won’t meet their needs. 

Contralateral breast cancer a risk for women with dense tissue

Compared with breast-cancer patients who have nondense tissue, those with dense tissue are at significantly elevated risk of developing a tumor in the opposite breast. 

Breast imaging research team calls for raising the acceptable recall rate

Breast imaging practices that have screening recall rates of at least 12 percent but less than 14 percent are in the “sweet spot” for optimal detection of breast cancer. Practices that call back more than 14 percent of screening patients see little incremental benefit, while those that come in under 10 percent risk missing many cancers. 

Danish study challenges value of screening mammography, draws sharp criticism from U.S. orgs

European researchers have reviewed a huge mammography dataset and found no association between screening mammography and a reduction in the incidence of advanced breast cancer. 

35 is too young to start screening mammography: Irish study

In Ireland, national guidelines call for women to begin routine screening mammograms at 35 years old. That’s too soon, according to the authors of a new analysis showing just 2.1 cancers per 1,000 symptomatic women aged 35 to 39 who were screened over a five-year period. 

The future is bright for aspiring breast imagers—but where best to practice?

The medical job market is ripe for radiologists specialized in breast imaging, and new rads considering this career path would do well to read “What You Need to Know—A Primer for Radiologists Entering Breast Imaging,” published online Dec. 22 in the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

Expanded genetic testing points more women to screening breast MRI

Testing for gene mutations beyond just BRCA1 and BRCA2 would indicate screening breast MRI and other proactive measures for many women who would not have been considered candidates for such measures going by family history alone, according to a large-sample study published online Dec. 21 in the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

Breast radiologists increasingly collaborating with—and adding value to—multidisciplinary care teams

Outcomes stand to be optimized when breast care is delivered in a multidisciplinary milieu—as long as such care incorporates screening, diagnosis of borderline and high-risk lesions, and management of the breast cancer patient.

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