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J Am Coll Radiol. 2018 Sep;15(9):1206-1213. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2018.04.010. Epub 2018 May 21.

Estimated Mortality of Breast Cancer Patients Based on Stage at Diagnosis and National Screening Guideline Categorization.

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Elkhart General Hospital, Elkhart, Indiana. Electronic address:



To compare overall and stage I to IV mortalities of patients diagnosed with breast cancer, calculated from stage at diagnosis using the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database stage mortality estimates, which are based on national screening guideline categorization.


From the stage at diagnosis of new breast cancer patients between 2010 and 2014, percentages of invasive cancers, stage 0 + I of total cancers, and stage I of invasive cancers, were calculated. Five-year estimated overall and invasive mortalities were calculated based on stage at diagnosis and SEER survival data. Program categories defined included an Annual Program, based on the ACR (annual screening age 40 and above), a Biennial Program, based on the US Preventative Services Taskforce (biennial screening ages 50 to 74 years), and a Hybrid Program, based on the American Cancer Society (annual screening ages 45 to 54 years, then biennially at ages 55 and above), including respective interval cancers.


In all, 445 breast cancers met the study inclusion criteria. Comparing program categories, the Annual Program had the lowest percentage of invasive cancers (75.3%), highest percentages of stage 0 + I of total cancers (75.3%) and stage I of invasive cancers (67.1%), and the lowest 5-year estimated overall (10.1%) and stage I to IV (12.0%) mortalities. Estimated overall and stage I to IV mortalities for the Annual Program was 37.3% and 30.6% less, respectively, than the Biennial Program, and 31.8% and 26.8% less, respectively, than the Hybrid Program.


Based on stage at diagnosis, the greatest mortality reduction is achieved with mammography utilization starting at the age of 40.


Mammography utilization; breast cancer mortality; breast cancer screening guidelines; cancer stage

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