U.S. May Take Cues From Europe In Breast Cancer Prevention

The main tool that is used to identify early stages of breast cancer is the mammogram. There are differences in mammography screening between U.S. patients and European patients in terms of the recommended time period between screenings; Europeans go longer between exams. Studies indicate that the effectiveness of the mammography screenings are comparable between the two locations. This could mean that the U.S. may want to relax a little bit regarding the timing of mammogram screening. However, it doesn't necessarily mean that. The study that provided this information was an interesting study that found that women getting screened in Vermont and those getting screened at a European facility were likely to report the same rates of breast cancer detection. However it should be kept in mind that screening rates in Vermont may differ from those in the rest of the U.S. It should also be kept in mind that treatment for breast cancer differs in Europe from here and may be more effective due to the difference in the health care systems between the two places. As such, it is recommended that further studies be done before determining that mammogram screening can be reduced in the U.S. Question of the Day: Should mammogram screening rates be the same in the U.S. as in Europe?

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