One in eight women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime. Men can also develop breast cancer, although it is more common in women.
A screening mammogram, which is an x-ray exam of the breast, can detect small growths in the breasts that cannot be felt by a person. It can also provide the physician with more information about growths in the breast that have been found during physical exam.
Early detection of cancer through mammogram screening allows treatment to start sooner and increases the chances of a positive medical outcome.
It is recommended that females age 40 to 49 have a screening mammogram every 1-2 years and females age 50 to 80 years have a screening mammogram yearly. Persons with certain risk factors may require a mammogram at an earlier age.
What You Can Do
If you think you are at risk for breast cancer, or you are a female age 40 or older, make an appointment for a screening mammogram.
In 2008, 87 percent of female patients seen in OB/GYN received a screening mammogram. This is above the national average of 70 percent.