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Editor's Choice

Mammography wars

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: (Published 23 November 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d7623
  1. Fiona Godlee, editor, BMJ
  1. fgodlee{at}

A Canadian taskforce has just published revised guidelines on breast cancer screening (doi:10.1136/bmj.d7625). The recommendations mirror those from the US Preventive Services Taskforce: in women who aren’t at high risk, don’t start routine mammography until age 50, screen only every two to three years, and stop routine clinical breast examination.

The US guidelines met with fierce opposition when they were published in 2009, and the Canadian guidelines are already under fire. The fact that both of these national task forces have reached the same conclusion should give some confidence in the result, but there is no doubting the heat in this controversy. Nor are …

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