For many women over age 40, breast cancer screening is an important part of a comprehensive cancer prevention plan. Routine breast exams and mammograms are highly effective at detecting abnormal changes in breast tissue early, when there are typically the most treatment options available. Prompt and effective treatment often leads to the best possible outcome.
If you haven’t had any breast cancer screenings yet, you might be wondering what to expect. Your best option is to consult with your physician about the most appropriate screening tests for your specific needs. Some people have a higher risk of developing cancer than others, and those individuals may benefit from earlier or more frequent screenings. Your physician can review your personal and family medical history and other factors to determine the best approach for you.
Breast cancer screening recommendations
For women who have an average risk of developing breast cancer, Moffitt Cancer Center recommends annual mammograms beginning at age 40. Women who have an immediate family member (e.g., mother, daughter or sister) who has had breast cancer, however, would be considered high risk, and may benefit from more frequent breast cancer screening tests. These tests may include a combination of mammograms and other imaging tests, such as breast ultrasounds and MRIs. The same may be true for women who were previously diagnosed with breast cancer and those who have tested positive for specific genetic mutations, such as the breast cancer susceptibility genes.
Where to get routine breast cancer screenings
While many medical providers offer breast cancer screenings, Moffitt Cancer Center provides a comprehensive range of preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic services in one place. We utilize the latest and most advanced technologies, including digital mammograms, and no referral is required to request an appointment.