Nav: Home

Women more likely to use other preventive health services after mammography

June 05, 2018

OAK BROOK, Ill. - Medicare beneficiaries who undergo breast cancer screening with mammography are more likely than unscreened women to undergo other preventive health services like screening for cervical cancer and osteoporosis, according to a major new study appearing online in the journal Radiology. Researchers found that even false-positive mammography findings did not reduce the likelihood of women utilizing these other preventive services.

Mammography is among the most commonly offered preventive services for women ages 40 years and older, making it a potentially significant influencer of adherence to other preventive services guidelines. However, little is known about the association between screening mammography and use of a variety of preventive services in the Medicare population, along with the impact of false-positive mammographic findings on preventive services use.

For the new study, researchers from NYU School of Medicine in New York, Emory University in Atlanta, and the Harvey L. Neiman Health Policy Institute in Reston, Va., set out to learn more about these associations.

"There were two overarching ideas to this study," said Stella Kang, M.D., M.Sc., assistant professor of radiology and population health at NYU School of Medicine. "First, we wanted to examine the potential for a patient's experience with one screening to influence appointments with other preventive services. Second, we wanted to see how the potential harms from false-positive findings might influence preventive service use."

Dr. Kang and colleagues compared preventive services utilization among 185,625 women who underwent mammography from 2010 to 2014 with that of a control group who did not have screening mammography. They zeroed in on the relationship between screening status and the probabilities of undergoing Pap smear, bone mass measurement, or influenza vaccination in the two years after mammography. The researchers also looked for a possible association between false-positive mammography results and subsequent use of the same non-mammographic preventive services. In theory, false positives, which require additional examinations and create added stress for the patient, might create negative associations with preventives services.

The results showed that women who underwent mammography screening, with either positive or negative results, were significantly more likely than unscreened women to later utilize Pap smear, bone mass measurement and influenza vaccine services. In women who had not undergone these preventive measures in the two years prior to screening mammography, utilization of all three services after false-positive mammography screening was no different than after a true-negative screening.

"It's encouraging that women for whom services are received through Medicare are not showing significant signs of any negative influence from mammography," Dr. Kang said. "If anything, the experience of breast cancer screening is potentially encouraging, as it appears to increase awareness of other preventive services."

There are a number of possible reasons for the increased odds of preventive services utilization, the researchers said. Adherence to screening mammography guidelines suggests a patient may be more proactive about her health in general, and referring physicians may consider a patient's willingness to undergo mammography as indicative of an understanding or acceptance of the favorable benefit-risk profile of recommended preventive services.

"Our theory is that when patients are counseled about mammography screening, this represents an opportunity for the physician to bring up other preventive services and the health benefits of these services for women in their age group," Dr. Kang said. "So a patient's interest in breast cancer services specifically could raise awareness in preventive services overall."

In the future, the researchers plan to look at mammography's effects on the utilization of other recommended preventive services, such as colorectal cancer screening.
-end-
"Use of Breast Cancer Screening and Its Association with Later Use of Preventive Services among Medicare Beneficiaries." Collaborating with Dr. Kang were Miao Jiang, Ph.D., Richard Duszak, Jr., M.D., Samantha L. Heller, Ph.D., M.D., Danny R. Hughes, Ph.D., and Linda Moy, M.D.

Radiology is edited by David A. Bluemke, M.D., Ph.D., University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, Wis., and owned and published by the Radiological Society of North America, Inc. (http://RSNA.org/radiology)

RSNA is an association of over 54,200 radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and related scientists promoting excellence in patient care and health care delivery through education, research and technologic innovation. The Society is based in Oak Brook, Ill. (RSNA.org)

For patient-friendly information on mammography, visit RadiologyInfo.org.

Radiological Society of North America

Related Cervical Cancer Articles:

Disasters can affect cervical cancer screening for years
Screening is important for the early detection of cervical cancer, but rates were significantly affected, in some areas for years, following a devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
Cervical cancer elimination possible within two decades in the US
At current levels of screening and HPV vaccination, cervical cancer incidence in the US is projected to fall below the threshold of elimination by 2038-2046.
Cervical cancer screening saves lives
Three-year interval in screening for cervical cancer is as effective as annual checkups, study finds.
Cervical cancer could be eliminated within a century
Cervical cancer could be eliminated worldwide as a public health issue within the next century.
25 years of learning to combat cervical cancer
A recent paper from the lab of Professor Sudhir Krishna at the National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bangalore, reviews the progress made in cervical cancer research over the past 25 years.
Cervical cancer screening numbers drop off in women 45-65
Virtually all cervical cancers are caused by HPV, and much of the attention in recent years has focused on preventing infections in younger women through HPV vaccination.
Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.
Cost-effectiveness analysis of 12 cervical cancer screenings
This cost-effectiveness analysis incorporates women's preferences and estimates quality of life and economic outcomes for 12 cervical cancer screening strategies.
Urine test could prevent cervical cancer
Urine testing may be as effective as the smear test at preventing cervical cancer, according to new research by University of Manchester scientists.
Cervical cancer subtype rising in some sub-populations
A new study reports that a type of cervical cancer that is less amenable to Pap testing is increasing in several subpopulations of women, pointing to the growing importance of human papillomavirus (HPV) testing and vaccination
More Cervical Cancer News and Cervical Cancer Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Mindset
In the past few months, human beings have come together to fight a global threat. This hour, TED speakers explore how our response can be the catalyst to fight another global crisis: climate change. Guests include political strategist Tom Rivett-Carnac, diplomat Christiana Figueres, climate justice activist Xiye Bastida, and writer, illustrator, and artist Oliver Jeffers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#562 Superbug to Bedside
By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Speedy Beet
There are few musical moments more well-worn than the first four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. But in this short, we find out that Beethoven might have made a last-ditch effort to keep his music from ever feeling familiar, to keep pushing his listeners to a kind of psychological limit. Big thanks to our Brooklyn Philharmonic musicians: Deborah Buck and Suzy Perelman on violin, Arash Amini on cello, and Ah Ling Neu on viola. And check out The First Four Notes, Matthew Guerrieri's book on Beethoven's Fifth. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.