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What are the pros and cons of breast screen­ing?

Lucy, Glas­gow Breast screen­ing is of­fered ev­ery three years for women aged 50 to 70, al­though younger or older women may also be of­fered it. Mam­mo­grams use X-ray imag­ing to de­tect breast can­cer be­fore a lump can be felt, but they also pick up harm­less changes. A re­cent re­view found that, for ev­ery 1,000 women screened over 20 years, about five breast can­cer deaths are pre­vented at the ex­pense of around 17 women who are di­ag­nosed and treated for a can­cer that would never have caused a prob­lem. Also, 200-plus women will ex­pe­ri­ence dis­tress due to false pos­i­tive find­ings.

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