Editorial: Unnecessary Mammograms - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Editorial: Unnecessary Mammograms

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CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - American women everywhere have good reason this week to be confused and angry after a Federal Advisory panel issued new recommendations that said the current regimen of breast exams is not necessary.

The recommendations issued Monday said women don’t have to begin getting mammograms until age 50 instead of 40 - which has been the standard for years. And the panel went on to say that those over 50 don’t need the test every year , every two years would be sufficient. 

The panel cited studies which said the benefits of screening women in their 40's were outweighed by the potential for unnecessary tests and treatment and accompanying anxiety.  Women I’ve talked to about this say they’d rather have a little anxiety than a little cancer and, they like me, can’t help but wonder if the cost of insurance coverage has something to do with these new guidelines.  And as the country contemplates government- un health care, one also has to wonder what other kinds of medical tests might soon be labeled as unnecessary.

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