Breast Archives

Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

[ Breast Archive ]
[ Main Archives Page ] [ Glossary/Index ]
[ FAQ ] [ Recommended Books ] [ Bulletin Board ]
   Search this site!
 
        

Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

I'm asking this because I am being practically harrassed by my doctor to have one. He told me to have one when I visited for a check-up about 6 months ago and I've been receiving calls from his office to schedule one ever since. They don't seem to be listening when I say that I don't want nor plan to have one.
When I asked why he insists so much, he just told me "it's routine, all women must have their first mammogram at 35".
But all the research I've done indicates there's no real benefit from having a mammogram at this age - since I'm healthy and have no family history of breast cancer. Just a nice amount of radiation.
So, where's the truth?

Sylvia



Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by
holly [2917.4] on January 09, 2005 at 20:16:06:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

I totally commend your doctor for pushing this! I started mine at 35. Women get breast cancer all the time at young ages with no family history. Why would you not? Its no big deal, doesnt hurt much and only last a few minutes.My Aunt insisted on having one while her doctor told her it was a waste of time at her young age of 40. She did it anyway and they found a tiny cancer (malignant) spot that she wouldnt have felt for 5-7 years! She had to have her breast removed!! (Imagine how bad her doctor felt) but she is alive and healthy today at 64! DO IT!! Holly

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Naya [120.14] on January 09, 2005 at 20:54:34:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

Hi! It's wise to do this because it is called a baseline mammogram by which they can compare future ones to see if there have been any changes.

Naya

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by labrat [1674.1369] on January 09, 2005 at 21:18:03:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

35 young for a baseline unless you have a history. I think they usually suggest 40, no?

There is a much better way for someone like you to check for BC. It's called thermography and doesn't use radiation...see if your doc will order you a thermogram. You can do a search on google for breas thermography and learn more...

I would try to avoid radiation to the breast if I were you.

~~~8>

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Happygal [2070.23] on January 09, 2005 at 21:29:02:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

Hi Sylvia,

It looks like you're going to get all opinions about this. Personally, my question would be, are mammograms ever of any use? During an annual exam, my gyn found a lump in my breast, and wasn't very worried because I have fibrocystic breasts and we just figured it was a cyst. She told me to get a mammogram sometime just to be sure.

Well, I went to get the mammogram, and the technician couldn't see the lump on the xray. So he redid it after that, twice making it three times I got smashed between those stupid plates. He still couldn't find it and then tried telling me I didn't have a lump. I had to let him feel the lump. How humiliating, and then they still charged me for the mammogram after all that -- several hours of my time and uselessness of all three mammograms.

At least in my case, I think they are a waste of time.

There is a lot of press these days about how there are other, safer and better methods for catching breast cancer. I think if someone had a history of cancer in the family, this type of activity might be useful. Otherwise, I think many things that some health care practitioners tout as "routine" and necessary.... are really not necessary for everyone. I think it takes some judgement on the need that particular individual has for it.

Best wishes,
Jan

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by WOW [1317.65] on January 09, 2005 at 23:24:03:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

Hi Syl,
I had my first one at 28 during a complete checkup sso yes, it's a good idea. Some women get cancer at an early age and it's better to e safe than sorry.

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Walt Stoll [9.1465] on January 10, 2005 at 07:46:10:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

Hi, Sylvia.

In MY opinion, the only reason is to have one on file to compare with if a lump should be found later in life.

Walt

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Michele [20.814] on January 10, 2005 at 07:47:03:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

I had one at that age and was glad I did; it showed a starting point if nothing else and now in my late 30's when I have an issue (which was once) they had something to compare my films.

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by I Vote No [3196.1351] on January 10, 2005 at 10:19:14:

In Reply to: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [2502.963] on January 09, 2005 at 19:03:53:

I wouldn't consider having a screening mammogram at 35. In fact I will be 50 next month and I regret very much the two I had in my mid-40s. I am concerned thta they might have harmed me. Please do your own research though. I would suggest the writings of Samuel Epstein, MD, PhD, as well as John Goffman MD, Phd. I will post a link below that is a good place to start your research. Only you can make a decision for yourself of course, but IMHO you need to do more research than asking people who post here what they think and I hope you are doing more than this.
In response to posters who say they know someone whose life was saved I can add the story of my sister. Our aunt had breast cancer in her early 50s and my sister started being aggressively mammogramed (if that is a word) in her late 30s or early 40s. She had a mammogram every year, sometimes every six months if that is what her doctor suggested. She also had ultra-sounds every six months. At age 49 she found a lump under her armpit which two different doctors treated with antibiotics thinking it was an infection as she had just had her annual mammogram and semiannual ultrasound two months previously and was told all was well. She insisted upon a bopisy when the lump remained unchanged and she was found to have stage four breast cancer. She lived another 19 months before dying from the breast cancer having spread to her lungs. I will always wonder about whether the aggresiveness with which she was mammogrammed as well as the early age at which she started getting them contributed to her breast cancer given what I read about the dangers of radiation as well as compression to the breast. And to the poster who said it didn't hurt that much I have to say that the two I had hurt like hell.



Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Sylvia [1578.963] on January 10, 2005 at 11:47:48:

In Reply to: Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by I Vote No [3196.1351] on January 10, 2005 at 10:19:14:

Thank you all for your input.
I finally managed to talk to my GYN in London where I lived before moving to the States about two years ago. She's a wonderful human being and married to an oncologist/radiologist. Her input was this more or less: she said she's aware that in the States they're pushing the starting age for mammograms earlier and earlier but in Europe the most aggressive supporters of mammograms suggest the age of 40 as a starting point and most doctors don't think they're necessary before the age of 50. There are two main reasons for this: 1. ionizing radiation is more harmful for young people(who produce new cells etc) and 2. The density of breast tissue before menopause makes it really hard to get accurate pictures, she gave me a number of 14% accuracy.
She also said that cancers caused by ionizing radiation are more elevated in the states than anywhere else in the world because of the excessive use of x-rays, cat-scans, mammograms etc. and that people taking full body c-scans are absorbing enormous amounts of radiation without being properly warned.

So after all this, even though I'm all for prevention, I think we should draw the line at some point and in the end, it should be one's own informed opinion that counts, not a doctor's who refuses to listen to one's concerns.

Sylvia



Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35?

Posted by Connie [1898.44] on January 10, 2005 at 16:38:20:

In Reply to: Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by I Vote No [3196.1351] on January 10, 2005 at 10:19:14:

Hi to I voted no, I know what you mean those hurt real bad?
That has to be hard on a person's breast.
I would say no since the doctors just want the tests mostly because they want those machines to bring in the money although I don't see how it helps them the Doctors that is?????

Follow Ups:


Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? ARCHIVE.

Posted by Walt Stoll [9.1465] on January 11, 2005 at 07:16:51:

In Reply to: Re: Are mammograms of any use at the age of 35? posted by Sylvia [1578.963] on January 10, 2005 at 11:47:48:

Thanks, Sylvia.

Right on!!!!!!

Walt

Follow Ups:


[ Breast Archive ]
[ Main Archives Page ] [ Glossary/Index ]
[ FAQ ] [ Recommended Books ] [ Bulletin Board ]
   Search this site!