Breast Cancer Screening and Early Detection
Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women in the United States. The five-year relative survival rates for all stages of breast cancer combined are 91%, according to the American Cancer Society. This rate is thanks to the increased prevalence of early detection through varying forms of breast cancer screening.
Since screening was introduced, breast cancer mortality rates have decreased significantly. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, caused a decline in screening rates in recent years—a concerning trend to those who screen for and treat breast cancer. Melissa Reichman, M.D., assistant attending radiologist at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Campus, encourages all women to look into the screening options available to them.
“Screen-detected cancer can lead to less extensive surgeries and treatment for the patient,” Dr. Reichman says. “The American College of Radiology recommends annual mammography screening starting at age 40 for women of average risk for developing breast cancer.”