breast cancer

Are breast cancer screening programs justified?

Millions of Canadians happily sign up for breast cancer screening every year. After all, we’re told that it “saves lives” for women aged 50 to 74. Yet, there is no evidence that it does. Most – but not all – studies conclude screening mammography reduces a woman’s chance of dying of breast cancer. But in randomized controlled trials on breast

Accessing reconstructive surgery after breast cancer treatment

One in nine Canadian women will develop breast cancer in their life time. The growth of screening programs means that breast cancer is being caught and treated earlier. Often, treatment involves surgery – lumpectomy or mastectomy. Increasingly, women are also choosing to undergo breast reconstruction surgery following treatment. However, only some of these breast cancer

Weighing the harms and benefits of mammography

Harms and Benefits of Mammography has run a series of stories on breast cancer screening mammography, stimulated by the recent guidelines from the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care.  This last story focuses on how women and policy makers must balance the benefits and harms of screening mammography. The issues raised in this series are relevant to screening

Did mammography save her life?

Did Mammography Save Her Life?

Some breast cancers detected by screening mammography are cured and would have led to death had they not been detected early. Other breast cancers detected by screening can be treated just as effectively if diagnosed later, may not have needed treatment at all, or may be so advanced that treatment does not prevent death from