Intended for healthcare professionals

Endgames Statistical Question

Screening tests III

BMJ 2009; 339 doi: (Published 21 October 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;339:b4247
  1. Philip Sedgwick, senior lecturer in medical statistics
  1. 1Centre for Medical and Healthcare Education, St George’s, University of London, Tooting, London SW17 0RE
  1. p.sedgwick{at}

    The performance of digital mammography as a screening tool for breast cancer was investigated in premenopausal and perimenopausal women. Digital mammography returned a “screen positive” or “screen negative” result. Breast cancer status was diagnosed by biopsy (gold standard). Digital mammography was reported to have a sensitivity of 47%, specificity of 97%, and positive predictive value of 10%.1

    Which of the following statements, if any, are true?

    • a) For every 100 women with diagnosed breast …

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