This year, the biggest and longest studies of mammography of all times, which followed 90,000 women for 25 years, showed that the procedure has no effect on breast cancer mortality.
During the study, researchers found that the death rate was identical in all women, the ones who received mammography, and the ones that did not, and even 22% of screen-detected invasive breast cancers were over-diagnosed, leading to unnecessary treatment. Therefore, their conclusion was that “the data suggest that the value of mammography screening should be reassessed.”
The same conclusion, that mammography screening does not affect overall mortality was brought by the researchers in the Cochrane Collaboration review. Therefore, there is a serious concern that this screening does not actually benefit women.
The recommendations by public health agencies are slowly updated as well. The American Cancer Society suggests annual mammograms for average-risk women beginning at the age of 40, and the US Preventive Services Task Force advises annual mammograms after the 50th year.
Due to all this, women are confused whether mammography is harmful or not, so this year, the Swiss Medical Board made a clear-cut recommendation: no more systematic mammography. no more systematic mammography.