Comment: Don’t be put off by scare on screening for breast cancer

Comment: Don’t be put off by scare on screening for breast cancer

Comment: Don’t be put off by scare on screening for breast cancer

First published in News

IT IS concerning to hear that a number of women who took part in breast screening in Oxford have been recalled because there is a possibility they were told – wrongly – that they were fine.

As a result of this possible error by Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust there are now 30 women who will be worried about the future.

These women will be alarmed to hear that it is possible that breast abnormalities in a small number of cases could have been detected if additional tests had been conducted at an earlier stage.

But only a small number of cases out of thousands may have been dealt with incorrectly and women should not be alarmed by the trust’s investigation, or its admission that initial screenings could have been conducted more thoroughly.

The easiest option for the trust would have been to contact patients individually, without going public, but it has chosen to highlight its concerns and as a result this could safeguard the future health of women who have undergone screening.

What is important now is that women aged between 50 and 70 and others who are at risk are not put off having regular mammograms.

Staff at GP practices and health centres can also offer support and advice.

The message to all women must be: Keep calm and carry on getting screened.

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