Breast cancer is gaining on us at an increasing rate each year. In 1990 in the United States alone we expect about 145,000 new cases and 45,000 breast cancer deaths in women. What are we doing about it? What is AMWA doing, and what are women physicians doing- for themselves and their patients? Can we do anything? The answer is yes, we can. We can reduce mortality considerably if the cancer is detected early. The five-year survival rate for women with breast cancer diagnosed in its early (localized) stages is 90%, but for women with cancer diagnosed after it has spread to distant sites the survival rate is only 18%. Therefore, early detection is the major weapon for fighting breast cancer deaths. The methods that we have for early detection are monthly self-examination, yearly examination by a clinician, and screening mammography. If one were to ask which of these will diagnose breast cancer earliest, the answer is undoubtedly screening mammography.
Obstetrics and Gynecology | Women's Health
Copyright American Medical Women’s Association used with permission
AMWA endorses uniform mammography screening.
Journal of the American Medical Women’s Association, 45(1),