To improve breast cancer outcomes, the ACR has created “Talking to Patients About Breast Cancer Screening,” a free toolkit for radiologists to share with referring doctors. The customizable resources help providers do the following:
• identify and assess reliable breast cancer screening and outcomes data;
• discern actual breast cancer screening risks vs benefits;
• discuss with patients when to be screened to avoid unnecessary death and treatment due to late breast cancer detection resulting from lack of screening; and
• earn CME credit upon completing an online module.
Approximately 35% of women who should be screened choose not to get a mammogram, contributing to thousands of deaths each year. With conflicting screening guidelines and insufficient current randomized controlled trial data, doctors may be unclear about modern prospective study data on reduced mortality and morbidity due to screening. In addition, providers may not know what to tell women regarding when and how often to be screened. This has contributed to confusion as to whether and when women should get a mammogram.
This toolkit encourages referring providers to make recommendations with the following in mind:
• All women should be assessed for risk by age 30 (especially African American and Ashkenazi women).
• Average-risk women should start annual screening at age 40.
• High-risk women should start sooner and consider supplemental exams.
• Mammography is proven effective at reducing breast cancer deaths.
• Mammography benefits outweigh screening risks—including overdiagnosis and false-positives.
Radiologists can utilize these materials in the following ways:
• customize them with their facility’s branding (space is available in each item);
• share them with referring clinicians and advise them of CME availability;
• place patient materials on their website and in their waiting room; and
• print and include in correspondence with patients and referring providers.
The toolkit can be accessed via the breast imaging resources section at ACR.org.— Source: ACR