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U.S. Breast Biopsy Rates Unchanged

More mammograms may mean more false positives requiring tests, experts say

MONDAY, July 25 (HeathDayNews) -- Even though mammogram use has increased among American women over the past 12 years, a new study finds the number of women receiving a breast biopsy has remained the same.

Recent advances in less-invasive biopsy techniques could be helping to keep biopsy rates high, the Mayo Clinic researchers speculate. A second factor could be that since growing numbers of women are receiving mammograms, more are also receiving false-positive results that require follow-up biopsies.

The researchers analzyed medical records for adult women living in Olmsted County, Minn., between 1988 to the end of 1999.

They found the annual rate of biopsies held steady at about 62.6 of every 10,000 women throughout the course of the study. There was also little change in biopsy findings, with one malignancy detected for every 2.2 benign results.

More information

The National Institutes of Health has more on breast biopsy.

SOURCES: Archives of Internal Medicine, news release, July 25, 2005
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