Harvard Experts Highlight Risks of Breast Tissue Density Laws

Harvard Experts Highlight Risks of Breast Tissue Density Laws
Harvard Medical SchoolWhile 21 American states currently have laws requiring radiologists to inform women who have dense breast tissue of their increased risk of developing breast cancer, three Harvard Medical School radiologists recently wrote an opinion article stating these laws may increase unnecessary procedures and false positives for women at low- and moderate-risk of breast cancer. The article entitled "Breast-Density Legislation — Practical Considerations", authored by Priscilla J. Slanetz, M.D., M.P.H., Phoebe E. Freer, M.D., and Robyn L. Birdwell, M.D., was published in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), and suggests that despite its good intentions, these types of laws may be leading to negative outcomes. It has been known for some time that density (i.e., a higher percentage of fibroglandular tissue than fatty tissue) may increase difficulties in detecting breast cancer during
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