How are the mammogram images evaluated?
The Mammography Screening Program always has two physicians evaluate the x-rays of the breast. The physicians use modern computer programs which allow different magnification levels and views of the mammogram images. This makes it easy to view, mark and measure abnormalities.
The mammogram images are not evaluated by the physicians together, but separately, independently of each other. If the mammogram is then classified as normal, no malignant change in the tissue is suspected. However, if one of the physicians evaluates the mammogram as abnormal, an additional specialist will be consulted.
If unable to assess the abnormality as clearly benign, the woman will be asked to return to an additional medical examination using ultrasound, and possibly a mammogram (“follow-up"). About 30 out of 1,000 women examined are requested to return for a clarifying follow-up. In 24 of these women the abnormality is then determined to be benign ("false-positive findings"). The remaining 6 women are diagnosed with breast cancer.
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