Annual Breast Cancer Screening From Ages 40 to 79 Years Is Best Strategy

Annual screening appears to provide the greatest benefit and lowest risk
Annual Breast Cancer Screening From Ages 40 to 79 Years Is Best Strategy
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Medically Reviewed By:
Mark Arredondo, M.D.

TUESDAY, Feb. 27, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Annual breast cancer screening at ages 40 to 79 years appears to avert the most breast cancer deaths and yields the greatest gain in life-years, according to a study published online Feb. 20 in Radiology.

Debra L. Monticciolo, M.D., from Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire, and colleagues examined the benefits and risks of different screening scenarios using data from the Cancer Intervention and Surveillance Modeling Network (CISNET). The four scenarios assessed were biennial screening at ages 50 to 74 and 40 to 74 years and annual screening at ages 40 to 74 and 40 to 79 years.

The researchers found that based on estimates for CISNET 2023, annual screening at ages 40 to 79 years improved the reduction in breast cancer mortality compared with biennial screening at ages 50 to 74 and 40 to 74 years (41.7 percent versus 25.4 and 30 percent, respectively). Compared with other screening scenarios, annual screening at 40 to 79 years prevented the most breast cancer deaths and gained the most life-years (11.5 per 1,000 and 230 per 1,000, respectively). For all screening scenarios, false-positive screening results were less than 10 percent (range, 6.5 to 9.6 percent) and were lowest for annual screening at ages 40 to 79 years. For all screening scenarios, benign biopsies were less than 1.33 percent per examination (range, 0.88 to 1.32 percent) and were lowest for annual screening at ages 40 to 79 years.

"The goal of any cancer screening program is to avert untimely cancer deaths; thus, annual breast cancer screening starting at 40 years of age and extending to 79 years of age and beyond is the best way to achieve that goal," the authors write.

One author disclosed ties to GE HealthCare.

Abstract/Full Text

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