Mammography and You: Do I Really Need a Mammogram?

Mammography and You: Do I Really Need a Mammogram?

Are you a woman? If so, then yes, you need a mammogram. Simply being born with two X chromosomes puts you at ‘average risk’ for breast cancer – and that risk only increases with age.

1 in 8 women will get breast cancer over an 80-year lifespan. 

The American College of Radiology (ACR) recommends that all women should have a  breast cancer risk assessment by the age of 30 – especially Black and Ashkenazi Jewish women – as they have a higher risk for developing the disease. 

Women with a family history of breast cancer or known genetic mutations (such as BRCA1 and BRCA2) also have a higher risk and could benefit from screening mammography before turning 40.  Only you and your doctor can assess whether you’ll benefit from earlier mammography or other preventative measures.

The reality is that the vast majority of women who get breast cancer – 75 percent – have no family history of the disease or other high risk factors.   

Mammography Saves Lives: Did you know that 1 in 6 breast cancers are found in women ages 40-49?

Research indicates that the most lives are saved from breast cancer when women get screened yearly, starting at age 40.  Yearly mammograms beginning at the age of 40 have helped cut breast cancer rates by more than 40 percent.  This is in part because mammograms can find tumors that are too small to be felt with your hands. These small cancers are easier and less costly to treat – leading to more positive outcomes in patients.

Early detection saves lives. Have you scheduled your mammogram yet?