High Breast Density Increases Breast Cancer Risk, Impedes Mammograms

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

U.S. News & World Report (3/21, Howley) details how high breast density is both a risk factor for breast cancer and an impediment in mammograms. The “American College of Radiology classifies density into four categories: mostly fatty, scattered density, consistent density and extremely dense.” Dense breasts “can obscure or hide worrisome spots because the mammogram simply can’t see them through the denser tissue.” In addition, density “is an independent risk factor for breast cancer.” 

Radiotherapy Benefits Outweigh Risks for Most Patients with Breast Cancer, Study Suggests

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Cancer Therapy Advisor (3/21, Primeau) reports that research suggests “for most patients with breast cancer, the benefits of modern radiotherapy outweigh the risks of future secondary malignancy and heart disease.” The findings were published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. 

Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL)

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

In 2011, the FDA identified a possible association between breast implants and the development of anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL), a rare type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Since 2011, we have strengthened our understanding of this condition and concur with the World Health Organization designation of breast implant-associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) as a rare T-cell lymphoma that can develop following breast implants. Read more here. 

Guidelines on Care of Cancer Survivors May Often Be Unclear, Research Suggests

Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Reuters (3/20, Rapaport) reports that a review indicates “treatment guidelines on care for survivors of the most common cancers often lack specifics or offer conflicting advice about when or how often to do certain tests.” Investigators “examined cancer guidelines from North America and Europe that have been published since 2010 to advise doctors on the best ways to care for survivors of nine malignancies: breast, colorectal, lung, prostate, melanoma, uterine, bladder, thyroid and testicle.” The researchers “found ambiguous recommendations in 83 percent of the guidelines.” The findings were published online in JAMA Internal Medicine.

“Alternative Facts” and Breast Cancer Screening

Monday, March 20, 2017

Daniel Kopans, MD, FACR, FSBI, writes about "alternative facts" and the impact the concept has in breast imaging. He writes, "'Alternative Facts” (AF) recently appeared as an outrageous concept in the “political arena”. What most do not realize is that “alternative” facts have been promulgated for decades by those seeking to reduce access to breast cancer screening.  This has led to the pseudo “debate” about screening that has persisted for decades due to the “alternative facts” that have been manufactured to keep the “debate” going.  Each time an “alternative fact” has been generated to cast doubt on screening, it has been refuted by science ([i]).  Unfortunately, as each (true) fact has been established, new “alternative facts” have been manufactured."