Health officials respond to new breast cancer screening guidelines

Health officials respond to new breast cancer screening guidelines

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - Officials with St. Mary's Medical Center and Deaconess Health System respond to the American Cancer Society's new guidelines for breast cancer screenings.

The new guidelines recommend most women start annual screenings at age 45 instead of 40, a change that moves the group closer to guidelines from an influential advisory task force.

St. Mary's officials said they follow NCCN (National Comprehensive Cancer Network) guidelines. However, their team will will review both sets of recommendations and decide a course of action.

Deaconess officials released the following statement:

The Deaconess Breast Center and other related departments are aware of the American Cancer Society's new recommendations pertaining to breast cancer screening guidelines. Our clinical experts will review these new recommendations as well as feedback from other important groups, such as the American College of Radiology and the American Society of Breast Surgeons, before altering any of our current practices.

While guidelines are important, they do not replace the conversation between a woman and her doctor. Women should talk to their family doctor or OB/GYN about risk factors, family history, and other concerns related to any medical screening or treatment. This discussion helps the woman make an informed decision based on her individual situation and not just a recommended formula.

What we know for certain is mammograms save lives. Mammography is the most effective tool a woman can use to detect breast cancer in its early stages when it is most treatable. When found early, women have a 99% chance of a cure.

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