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ACOG Statement on Revised American Cancer Society Recommendations on Breast Cancer Screening

October 20, 2015

Washington, DC – The following is a statement from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) in response to today's release of the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) new recommendations on breast cancer screening published in JAMA:

“ACOG maintains its current advice that women starting at age 40 continue mammography screening every year and recommends a clinical breast exam. ACOG recommendations differ from the American Cancer Society’s because of different interpretation of data and the weight assigned to the harms versus the benefits.

“In January ACOG is convening a consensus conference with the intent to develop a consistent set of uniform guidelines for breast cancer screening that can be implemented nationwide. Major organizations and providers of women’s health care, including ACS, will gather to evaluate and interpret the data in greater detail.

“ACOG strongly supports shared decision making between doctor and patient, and in the case of screening for breast cancer, it is essential. We recognize that guidelines and recommendations evolve as new evidence emerges, but currently ACOG continues to support routine mammograms beginning at 40 years as well as continued use of clinical breast examinations.”

What are ACOG’s current recommendations?

  • Screening mammography every year for women aged 40-49 years
  • Screening mammography every year for women aged 50 years or older
  • Breast Self-Awareness has the potential to detect palpable breast cancer and can be recommended
  • Clinical Breast Exam every year for women aged 19 or older

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (The College), a 501(c)(3) organization, is the nation’s leading group of physicians providing health care for women. As a private, voluntary, nonprofit membership organization of more than 58,000 members, The College strongly advocates for quality health care for women, maintains the highest standards of clinical practice and continuing education of its members, promotes patient education, and increases awareness among its members and the public of the changing issues facing women’s health care. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), a 501(c)(6) organization, is its companion organization. www.acog.org

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American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
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