Q: I’m not 50 years old yet, should I start breast screening?
A: In short, Yes. The risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer between 40 and 50 years of age is nearly the same as the risk for those who are 50. We recommend that women think about starting mammogram breast screening at age 40. Women under age 50 must get a requisition from their family doctor every year for annual mammogram breast screening.
Q: I have dense breasts, will mammograms work for me?
A: Dense breast tissue appears white on mammogram, making cancer detection more difficult but mammograms can identify breast cancer in women with dense breast tissue. Women with dense breasts should have a mammogram once a year, to better detect any changes in the breast. If you have dense breasts and are in the Ontario Breast Screening program you will be recalled every year for annual mammograms by personal letter.
Q: Should I get a breast MRI?
A: Breast MRI is not a good screening test for women of average risk. Women in the Ontario Breast High Risk Breast Screening Program will receive both an MRI and mammogram every year. If you think you might be at high risk for breast cancer, talk to your doctor about getting a referral for high risk breast screening.