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Mammogram Rates Unchanged Since USPSTF Recommendations

No decrease in mammography screening noted for women aged 40 to 49, 50 to 74 years

MONDAY, April 22 (HealthDay News) -- There has been no change in mammography screening rates among women aged 40 years or older following publication of the 2009 U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommendations, according to research published online April 19 in Cancer.

Lydia E. Pace, M.D., M.P.H., from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, and colleagues examined the impact of the 2009 USPSTF recommendations on mammography screening patterns among women age 40 to 49 years and 50 to 74 years. Data on mammography use were reviewed for 27,829 women aged 40 years or older from the National Health Interview Survey for 2005, 2008, and 2011.

The researchers observed a non-significant increase in mammography screening rates, from 51.9 percent in 2008 to 53.6 percent in 2011 (P = 0.07), after adjustment for race, income, education level, insurance, and immigration status. There were no declines noted among any age groups. The screening rates were 46.1 percent in 2008 and 47.5 percent in 2011 among women aged 40 to 49 years (P = 0.38), and the corresponding rates were 57.2 and 59.1 percent for women aged 50 to 74 years (P = 0.09).

"In conclusion, we observed no decrease in mammography rates for women aged >40 years after publication of the USPSTF recommendations in 2009," the authors write. "Whether through their impact on patients, providers, or both, it seems that the vigorous policy debates and coverage in the media and medical literature have limited adoption of these recommendations."

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