Mammogram’s Role as Savior Is Tested (The New York Times)


[[{“type”:“media”,“view_mode”:“media_large”,“fid”:null,“attributes”:{“class”:“media-image alignright size-full wp-image-1606”,“typeof”:“foaf:Image”,“style”:“”,“width”:“100”,“height”:“100”,“title”:“inthenews-nyt”,“alt”:“The New York TImes logo”}}]]Professor H. Gilbert Welch and Brittney A. Frankel ’12 published a study on October 24 showing mammograms save relatively few lives.

As The New York Times reports, only 3 to 13 percent of women who discovered their breast cancer through a mammogram were actually helped by the test.

“The presumption often is that anyone who has had cancer detected has survived because of the test, but that’s not true,” Welch told the Times. “In fact, and I hate to have to say this, in screen-detected breast and prostate cancer, survivors are more likely to have been overdiagnosed than actually helped by the test.”

Welch is a professor at Dartmouth Medical School and director of the Center for Medicine and the Media at The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice. Frankel is a government major from Hewlett, N.Y.

Read the full story, published by The New York Times on 10/24/11.

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