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ACS Changed Guidelines: How Often Should Mammograms Be Done Now?

By HERWriter
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ACS Changed Guidelines: Now How Often Should Mammograms Be Done? MonkeyBusiness Images/PhotoSpin

If you want your doctor to continue doing them during your routine physical exams, talk to her about it. Even with the new guidelines, women are encourage to "know" their breasts and report any suspicious areas. Remember though, the likelihood of finding a mass during a breast exam is low, so do not mistake using manual exams as an alternative to mammogram screening.

3) Remember, these guidelines were created based on statistics regarding life expectancy, not quality of life issues.

CNN reports that critics of the new guidelines state that the ACS only looked at whether screening saved a woman’s life, not whether screening earlier prevented women from needing to have a mastectomy or chemotherapy.

Do what is right for you. And if later you decide to change your mind, that’s OK too.


New Mammogram Recommendations: A Guide. New York Times.com. Retrieved Oct. 25, 2015.

New breast cancer guidelines: screen later, less often. CNN.com. Retrieved Oct. 25, 2015.

Why New Guidelines Probably Won’t Mean Fewer Mammograms. New York Times.com. Retrieved Oct. 25, 2015.

In major shift, new guidelines scale back breast cancer screenings for younger women. Washington Post.com. Retrieved Oct. 25, 2015.

Oeffinger, MD., Kevin C. et. Al. Breast Cancer Screening for Women at Average Risk. 2015 Guideline Update From the American Cancer Society. JAMA. 2015;314(15):1599-1614. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.12783.

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EmpowHER Guest

Yep, I agree with Linda.
I was lucky to find my lump, early, with self examination.
I would encourage self examination, pluss mammograms.Have a mamogram annually, at least from age 40, earlier, if there is family history.
Also, mammograms can hurt, let's face it...I find taking pain killers half an hour beforehand helps.
Also, do your best to be supportive for people going through treatment for cancer.
That means, no free advice, just cuppas, maybe offering lifts to tests and treatment, being good company.It can be very lonely, so many people run...maybe they think cancer is infectious?

October 30, 2015 - 2:57pm

So the new guidelines are based on a lot of false positives. Regardless, I would rather have a biopsy and testing with the result of a false positive vs. not knowing and having something linger. In my humble opinion, it feels like we are going backwards in testing. As far as I am concerned, test away. A problem caught in the early stages is much easier to treat and the outcome to cure is far greater. Just my opinion.

October 29, 2015 - 4:20pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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