USPSTF begins updating breast cancer screening recommendations

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 - Senior woman

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has begun updating its recommendations on screening for breast cancer,  according to its website .

The process will begin with the creation of a Research Plan that will frame the scope, conduct, and content of a systematic evidence review. The draft of the Research Plan has been  posted for public comment from Nov. 14 to Dec. 11 .

In order to maintain useful recommendations for health professionals and the public, each guideline is updated every five years.  The last review for breast cancer screening occurred in 2009 , in which the USPSTF recommended that biennial screening mammography be performed for women 50 to 74 years old and that the decision to begin regular biennial mammography before this time period be an individual one that accounts for a patient’s values.

The 2009 recommendations also disclosed that current evidence is insufficient to evaluate the benefits and harms of mammography in women 75 years or older; breast self-examination should not be taught, evidence is insufficient to assess the additional benefits and harms of clinical breast examination beyond screening mammography in women aged 40 and older; and evidence is insufficient to assess the additional benefits and harms of digital mammography or MRI as screening modalities.