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Development in long-discussed cancer-screening guideline

Some? None? More?

When it comes to breast cancer screening for women in New York and across the United States, the accepted guideline seems, well, anything but accepted.

In fact, discussion simply seems to lead to more questions.

Test initially at age 40? 45? 50? Never, unless indicated by family history?

A recent article focused on the topic of breast cancer screening and associated health risks for some women notes that the standard for many years posited the age of 50 as being appropriate for first-time mammograms.

That article further notes the "furor' caused a handful-plus of years ago when that long-accepted guideline was questioned, with different health organizations then beginning to offer up varied suggestions.

And the reasons for questioning were indeed strong and valid.

Foremost among them relates to so-called "false positives" that result from many screenings.

That ominous-sounding term means exactly what it implies: Many American women undergoing doctors' manual breast exams and mammograms have been misdiagnosed, to their peril.

Incorrect screening results have resulted in subsequent and unnecessary tests for high numbers of women. In best-case scenarios, the downsides have been limited to pocketbook exactions and wasted time.

In worst-case outcomes, though, benign tumors are operated on. Victims of negligent medical care undergo one or more remedial surgeries that yield pain and no meaningful medical benefits.

And, of course, the fear factor runs high.

A recent guideline issued by the American Cancer Society states that women can forgo routine manual checks from doctors and start getting mammograms at 45 rather than five years earlier.

Not all health organizations agree in an absolute sense with the from-45 guideline, with one health group spokesperson stating, "Let women decide what's meaningful for them."

Questions or concerns regarding matters related to medical malpractice or hospital/physician negligence can be directed to an experienced New York medical malpractice attorney.

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