Poll: Women still confused about breast cancer screening
Di Nardo says the 50 to 69 age bracket is where the Cancer Society sees the strongest evidence of the benefits of a mammogramIt seems women are still of kind of fuzzy on when they should be checked regularly for breast cancer.
The Canadian Cancer Society says women should get their 1st mammogram the year they turn 50 & get them every 2 years until age 69.
But a new poll for the society finds 68% of women don't know 50 is the magic number. 42% think they only need mammograms in their 40s. Almost half the women asked didn't know a mammogram is the best way to check for breast cancer.
Joanne Di Nardo with the Ontario division of the Cancer Society says the test can pick up a cancerous mass as small as an apple seed. She says it's why mammograms are key to catching cancer early to give women the best chance to beat it.
Women who are considered "at risk", with a history of breast cancer in their families often get mammograms earlier. But Di Nardo says if you're younger than 50 & not considered high risk, the decision to have a mammogram has to spin out of a talk with your doctor.
Di Nardo adds that it's important for women to get to know their bodies to be able to pick up on changes that could be signs of trouble. In 2007, the Cancer Society backed away from telling women to use a specific method on a regular schedule to check their breasts for lumps.
Di Nardo admits there's a lot of contradictory information from health agencies around the world about when & how women should be checked for breast cancer. She says if women are confused, they should reach out the Cancer Society for help.
You can reach the Canadian Cancer Society through their web site.