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Breast Cancer Risk Assessment: What Is It—and Are Mammograms Not Enough?

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is a necessary ritual we all partake in once we reach a certain age, if not earlier.There was a time—one not that long ago—when the screening method was not routine.

In the mid-1980s, right before the promotion of mammography screening became widespread, the death rate from breast cancer in the U.S.

remained unchanged for more than 40 years, according to . Since 1990, it’s declined by at least 38%. That’s attributed in large part to early detection with mammograms.In the decades since, guidelines have changed and misinformation has swirled, but mammograms remain the gold standard for breast cancer screening. “Mammograms are the best tests we have for screening the general population,” says , FACS, Chief of Breast Surgery for the Mount Sinai Health System and Director of the Dubin Breast Center. “They pick up about 85 to 90% of breast cancers, but they're definitely not perfect.”No, they are not.

Olivia Munn, 43, highlighted this recently when she shared in an that she was diagnosed with breast cancer just two months after a normal mammogram. “I wouldn’t have found my cancer for another year—at my next scheduled mammogram—except that my OBGYN, Dr.

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