It is also good to remember that half of all women experience false positives in mammograms after 10 years of screening. The study was published today in JAMA Network Open
. The chance of a false positive result is higher among younger women and women with dense breasts. In addition, results from the Women’s Health Initiative showed women who took either type of MHT pills had higher breast density and more abnormal screening mammograms (not explained by the higher breast density) that required follow-up tests. Even worse, False-Negative results occur when mammograms appear normal even though breast cancer is present. Overall, screening mammograms miss about 20% of breast cancers that are present at the time of screening.
The moral of the story is that there is no one perfect tool for women to identify breast cancer and women deserve to access to all tools which include mammography, genetic screening (expensive and only accounts for 15-20% of all breast cancers– 89% of breast cancer in women has no family history), and proteomic technology with Auria (affordable and risk assess all).