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When should you get a mammogram for breast cancer?

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When and if you need these imaging tests is a personal decision between you and your doctor. Most women don’t start having mammograms until they’re at least 40. If you’re at higher risk for breast cancer, your doctor may want you to start at a younger age.

The American Cancer Society recommends yearly screening mammograms starting at 45. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force says otherwise. It recommends that women between 50 and 74 get screened every 2 years.

A mammogram can show breast lumps up to 2 years before they can be felt. Different tests help determine if a lump may be cancer. Ones that aren’t cancerous tend to have different physical features than ones that are. Imaging tests such as mammograms and ultrasounds can often see the difference.

SOURCES:

Breastcancer.org.

WebMD Medical Reference from the American College of Physicians: "Oncology: Breast Cancer."

National Cancer Institute.

Journal of the American Medical Association.

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on March 10, 2019

SOURCES:

Breastcancer.org.

WebMD Medical Reference from the American College of Physicians: "Oncology: Breast Cancer."

National Cancer Institute.

Journal of the American Medical Association.

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on March 10, 2019

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How can you confirm if you have breast cancer?

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