'Screen women for breast cancer every year from 35'

Mount Sinai's Digital 3-D Mammography Van Rolls Into New York City

Breast cancer screening should begin at 35 for at-risk women, to pick up thousands of cases earlier and save lives, experts have said.

"Our study provides evidence of just how effective the combination of early detection and modern breast cancer treatment have been in averting breast cancer deaths", Hendrick said in a journal news release.

A study funded by the charity Breast Cancer Now found cancers were picked up in younger age groups than those covered by current NHS screening programmes.

The researchers analyzed that if 35-39 years of old women undergo annual mammograms, then breast cancer could be detected earlier. In this screening, 35 invasive breast cancer tumors of small size were detected before they could reach the lymphatic nodes.

At the moment women are eligible for a scan due to their family history from the age of 40.

In total, 50 breast cancers were detected (in 49 women), of which 35 were invasive tumours.

"While this trial is really encouraging, these are the first results to show that screening would be effective for this age group - and it may still be some time before this option could be extended to women aged 35-39". Hence, before allowing it to spread in the entire body, these small tumors could be removed permanently to prevent women from breast cancer.

Current guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) recommend annual screening for women aged 40 to 49 who are at moderate or high risk of the disease.

The report's lead author Professor Gareth Evans said the results of the new trial are "very promising".

Annual screening for younger women aged 35-39 who have a family history of breast cancer would be highly effective in detecting tumours earlier, a major United Kingdom trial based in Manchester has found.

"With breast cancer still the leading cause of death in women under 50, we need to find ways to identify those most at risk and offer them interventions earlier".

"Over 335,000 women were diagnosed with new breast cancer in the United States in 2018", she noted, and "eight out of ten of these women have no family history of breast cancer".

Baroness Morgan said: "Early detection remains absolutely critical to stopping women dying from breast cancer". African-American women are more likely to die from breast cancer than non-hispanic white women.

He said more research is now needed to determine the impact of this screening on women's overall survival.

In its response, NHS England spokesperson assured to consider the possible changes to the screening programme in the review.

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