(NEW YORK) — Despite a 2009 recommendation from the United States Preventative Services Task Force that women between the ages of 40 and 49 not undergo routine mammogram breast screenings, mammogram rates actually rose among women in that age group.
The recommendation from the USPSTF was a controversial one, because some experts argued that delayed screening would increase breast cancer deaths.
A recent study in the journal Cancer found that doctors and female patients have largely ignored the recommendation from the USPSTF. Researchers studied data from nearly 28,000 women and found that 53.6 percent of women had a mammogram in 2011, up from 51.9 percent in 2008. Within the population of 40 to 49 year old women, 47.5 percent had a mammogram in 2011, up from 46.1 percent in 2008.
The study did not determine why mammogram rates rose after the recommendation, but did point out that a number of prominent advocacy groups continued to recommend screenings for women between the age of 40 and 49 despite the USPSTF recommendation.
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Magdala Louissaint, KPVI
Jamiel Lynch and Debra Goldschmidt, CNN
Karen Lehr, KIVI