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And Then This Happened….…………” More Young Women Being Diagnosed with Breast Cancer Than Ever Before”

Updated: May 8


Read this article*:


This report was published through Medscape on January 29, 2024*. In it, the author, F.

Perry Wilson, MD, MSCE asks the question of “why are young women all of a sudden

more likely to get breast cancer?” While this is a wide-open question that has many

differing opinions in reply, the author “speculates that there are multiple causes,

including [but not limited to] environmental toxins, pollution, hormone exposure

[xenoestrogens] and so on”. He states that “figuring this out will be the work of multiple

other studies.” But his point in bringing this JAMA Network Open finding to the surface

in his article is that if “the landscape of cancer is continuously changing, we need to

adapt to it”. He further surmises that “national agencies may need to reconsider their

guidelines for when screening mammography should begin”.


My thoughts on this article conclusion were instant with regard to the following:


Why is he considering that only a mammogram can be a breast cancer screening?


Mammogram, just like the other structural screenings of ultrasound and

MRI are useful screenings for abnormal structure in the breast. (It is important to

note here that a mammogram - nor any other breast screening - can diagnose a

breast cancer. Breast cancer can only be diagnosed conventionally through a

biopsy).


The doctor seems unaware that the starting age for mammography has

traditionally been at age 40 according to the guidelines and why it cannot be

used effectively for women under the age of 40. [1] According to the Yale

Medicine [2] the reason is that women under the age of 40 often have dense

breast tissue leading to an inconclusive mammography result. When this occurs

some other type of screening is necessary in lieu of the mammogram.


However, current primary insurance companies will not cover the cost of a

mammogram (or ultrasound/MRI) for women under the age of 40 unless there is

a reason to do the screening (i.e. family history of breast cancer, a symptom

concern or palpable lump present in a breast – peace of mind in preventative

screening is not considered a valid, medically-codable reason for a screening).


The guidelines currently put out by “national agencies” show that the

recommended age for a mammogram was 40, then changed to 50 and is

currently back to 40, but even that guideline is ambiguously noted as being

“under review” by a national agency. If you consider these agencies to be

authorities, the American Cancer Society states the starting age is 45 [3]. The

Mayo Clinic says 40 [4]. Johns Hopkins says it was 50, but is now back to 40 [5].

The only “national agency” of note in this line up of researched agencies is the

USPST whose website currently states that there is an “update in progress” for

breast mammography screening [6].


If mammography is not recommended or available for women under 40 and getting an

ultrasound or MRI requires a reason to be screened, then what does that leave for

women under the age of 40 that would like to have peace of mind in preventative

screening for breast cancer, especially in light of these current findings of breast cancer

in young women?


The answer is thermography! Thermography is a noninvasive screening,

perfectly suited for a young woman with dense breast tissue since it is a test of

physiology and not structure and a young women can start a baseline in

thermography at the age of 28 of her own accord. She does not need a symptom

complaint, family history or reason at all to have thermography other than her

own health care choice for peace of mind in screening for breast cancer

prevention. Hopefully more doctors will catch on to this valuable screening and

that it will be considered a valid method of screening for these young women so

that they too can be assured of a viable way to monitor for breast cancer

development.


If you know a young woman that is concerned about her breast health and she

has been unable to obtain a referral for a screening from her healthcare provider,

please let her know about thermography. There is no referral needed and the

results come back to her directly making this a quick process in helping her to

retain peace of mind regarding her breast health.

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