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CDC: Americans Often Skipping Screening Tests For Breast, Cervical And Colon Cancer

Friday, May 8, 2015
On its website, NBC News (5/8, Fox) reports that “Americans are still often skipping screening tests for breast, cervical and colon cancer, a new government survey finds.” The survey indicated that “more than a quarter of women eligible for mammograms are not getting them on time, nearly 20 percent are missing Pap smears and fewer than 60 percent of adults have had a recent colon cancer screening.” In a statement, Dr. Lisa Richardson, director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, said, “It is concerning to see a stall in colorectal cancer screening rates.” Dr. Richardson added, “We must find new ways to make people and providers aware that getting tested for colorectal cancer could prevent cancer and save their lives.”

ACR Encouraging Radiologists To Leverage Technology To Increase Their Visibility In The Healthcare System

Thursday, May 7, 2015
Forbes (5/7) carries a Medidata article reporting that “diagnostic imaging is a critical component of the health care process, but in recent years interactions between radiologists and referring physicians have decreased, says Mike Tilkin, the chief information officer at the American College of Radiology (ACR).” The increase “in volume due to high demand for imaging and the efficiencies of digital imaging over film-based alternatives result in radiologists more likely to interact with referring physicians through electronic reports, than in a room discussing film together.” Thus, “with these changes, ACR is actively encouraging radiologists to leverage technology to increase their visibility in the health care system.” 

Lawmakers Urge HHS To Oppose USPSTF’s Mammogram Guidance

Thursday, May 7, 2015
The Hill (5/7, Ferris) reports that “several lawmakers who have survived breast cancer are urging the Obama administration to oppose new recommendations that say women under age 50 shouldn’t be screened annually for the disease.” According to the Hill, “Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) – who have both battled breast cancer – joined 60 other members of Congress to condemn recent guidance from” the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), “which advises against regular mammograms for younger women.” In a letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, lawmakers wrote, “Years of science and medicine have shown that appropriate screening can lead to early detection and save lives.” 

Study Suggests Pain From Mammograms Could Be Reduced

Monday, May 4, 2015
The Wall Street Journal (5/5, Lukits, Subscription Publication) reports in its “Research Report” that a study published in BMC Women’s Health found that women with smaller breasts suffered greater pain from mammogram screening, and suggested that if the force applied to breasts in screening could be made proportional to size, it would reduce the pain of screening. The study also suggested that breast compression could be shortened from an average of 12.8 seconds to 4.3 seconds, thus reducing the pain without any reduction in effectiveness. 

Mammography May Be Better Than MRI For Screening After Breast Cancer

Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Medscape (4/29, Harrison) reports that research suggests that “for women with a personal history of breast cancer, surveillance is better with mammography than with MRI because more cancers are detected with mammography in these patients.” The findings were presented at the American Roentgen Ray Society 2015 Annual Meeting. 
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