Again we are talking about the effects of screening, that is, a test offered to all women of a certain age group: this does not mean that a doctor can prescribe the test to a specific woman, perhaps because she is familiar with cancer breast in the family or has a breast with characteristics that predispose to cancer (such as hyperdense glandular tissue ).
Early diagnosis means identifying a disease first
An examination such as mammography does not prevent the disease , that is, it does not protect against cancer, but allows it to be diagnosed in advance , in the belief that in doing so the treatments are less invasive and mortality is lower. Here a linguistic clarification is needed: according to some surveys among the population, the use of the word prevention to indicate what in medicine is called secondary prevention, but which in common parlance would be early diagnosis , is one of the sources of greatest confusion for women. who have to decide if and how to joinscreening campaigns: many think that by undergoing this test they will avoid getting sick, while the test only serves to diagnose any disease early 3d mammogram in Sparta.
Pay attention to the terms
If an exam is offered to all people in a certain age group and with particular characteristics, it is said to be a screening exam , that is, not based on the characteristics of the individual or on his or her family history, but on elements shared by the whole. group (for example, people of the same gender and of a certain age group). One of the important elements for a test to become a screening is that it affects mortality from the disease it diagnoses: it is not enough to make more diagnoses, these early diagnoses must allow to save lives by changing the natural course of the disease.
The mammography can be used for screening and is therefore recommended and offer free in Italy to all women in the age group between 50 and 69 years. Some Regions, on the recommendation of the Ministry of Health, are extending it to women between 45 and 49 years with an annual interval and between 70 and 74 years with a two-year interval)
This does not mean, however, that there are no women who need to do a mammogram even at a younger age , for example if they are familiarfor breast cancer or because they have a breast with some particular characteristics which, on the basis of the studies conducted so far, can favor the appearance of a tumor. In their case, however, we do not speak of screening, because they do not fall into the general category, but of diagnostic tests prescribed on the basis of individual characteristics.