Change in mammography guidelines questioned

Jan 28, 2010

The methodology and evidence behind a widely publicized change in national mammography guidelines is questionable, according to a review in the Journal of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JDMS), published by SAGE.

In November 2009, the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) published a report in the Annals of Internal Medicine discussing the screening techniques for the early detection of . A few isolated portions of that report, regarding recommended changes for the use of , were widely discussed in the media, and garnered tremendous public attention.

This new JDMS article provides an evidenced-based review of the work and recommendations contained in the USPSTF report and raises the question whether the controversial conclusions for were supported by established scientific measurement and research standards. The JDMS review found low methodological scores in the USPSTF report, which may place in question the recommendations generated from the report.

The article concludes that, despite the report's depiction as a systematic review, the USPSTF report was actually just a review of literature, which reduces the overall scientific impact of the report to a much lower level in the hierarchy of evidence.

"Even though the methodology used by the USPSTF is not clear and the level of evidence is questionable, the proposed recommendations have been highly publicized." writes author Kevin D. Evans. "The most appropriate way to guarantee patients are receiving quality health care is to become adept at reviewing published research and implementing information that will change current practice patterns."

Explore further: Blocking cellular quality control mechanism gives cancer chemotherapy a boost

More information: The article "Review of the US Preventive Services Task Force's Statement on Screening for Breast Cancer" in Journal of Diagnostic Medical Sonography is available free for a limited time at jdm.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/26/1/19 .

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Obese women play cancer roulette

Mar 16, 2009

Obese women may be putting themselves at greater risk of breast cancer by not undergoing regular screening. According to new research by Dr. Nisa Maruthur and her team from The John Hopkins University School of Medicine in ...

New mammogram advice raises questions, concerns

Nov 16, 2009

(AP) -- For many women, getting a mammogram is already one of life's more stressful experiences. Now, women in their 40s have the added anxiety of trying to figure out if they should even be getting one at ...

Recommended for you

Experts set strategic priorities for lymphoma research

2 hours ago

A committee of lymphoma experts today unveiled a strategic roadmap identifying key priority areas in both infrastructure and research that will be critical for advancing treatments for people with lymphoma. The report is meant to inform future research directions as well as fund ...

Research aims to reduce health care disparities

2 hours ago

The lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender/transsexual, queer/questioning and intersex (LGBTQI) population has been largely understudied by the medical community. Researchers at Moffitt Cancer Center found that the LGBTQI community ...

Promising drug target identified in medulloblastoma

3 hours ago

Scientists at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center have identified a protein critical to both the normal development of the brain and, in many cases, the development of medulloblastoma, a fast-growing ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.