Clinical Edge

Summaries of Must-Read Clinical Literature, Guidelines, and FDA Actions

Screening for Breast Cancer

USPSTF issues recommendation statement

The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has issued an updated recommendation statement on screening for breast cancer that recommends biennial screening mammography for women aged 50 to 74 years. (B recommendation). The statement is an update of the 2009 USPSTF recommendation and applies to asymptomatic women aged 40 years or older who do not have preexisting breast cancer or a previously diagnosed high-risk breast lesion and who are not at high risk for breast cancer because of a known underlying genetic mutation. Other recommendations include:

• The decision to start screening mammography in women prior to age 50 years should be an individual one. Women who place a higher value on the potential benefit than the potential harms may choose to begin biennial screening between the ages of 40 and 49 years. (C recommendation).

• The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms of screening mammography in women aged 75 years or older. (I statement)

• The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the benefits and harms of digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) as a primary screening method for breast cancer. (I statement)

• The USPSTF concludes that the current evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms of adjunctive screening for breast cancer using breast ultrasonography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), DBT, or other methods in women identified to have dense breasts on an otherwise negative screening mammogram. (I statement)

Citation: Siu AL, et al. Screening for breast cancer: US preventive services task force recommendation statement. [Published online ahead of print January 12, 2016]. Ann Intern Med. doi: 10.7326/M15-2886.