Sarah’s Choice: Breast Cancer and Mammogram Screening Decisions

Sarah’s Choice: Breast Cancer and Mammogram Screening Decisions

Amy Price (Centre for Evidence Based Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 16
DOI: 10.4018/ijudh.2013010105
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The utility of screening mammograms is debated amidst reviews of lead-time bias and high false positive rates. Medical communities are highly invested with equipment and labor to fulfill screening mandates. It is an emotive topic, as 1 in 12 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Survival rates are rising but still death from breast cancer is tragic and painful. It is against this backdrop the author assists Sarah (pseudo-name), who is a 39 year old woman make a choice about mammogram screening.
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Clinical Scenario

“You have just seen Sarah, a 45 year woman asking for advice. Her older sister, Rita, who is 60 years old, was diagnosed with breast cancer two weeks ago following her noticing a lump in her right breast. Rita opted out of the national screening program for breast cancer because she found mammography to be painful. Two other sisters, aged 56 and 52 are following the usual screening program schedule. Six month ago one of them had a positive finding followed by more tests, had a biopsy with no clear result, and finally had a nodule removed that was diagnosed as benign.”

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