Providers may want to consider stopping routine mammograms for women age 75 and older after a study found that they’re 123 times more likely to die from causes other than breast cancer.
Among the women who had one or more mammograms between 66 and 94 years of age, Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers found that 7,583 were diagnosed with invasive breast cancer and 1,742 with ductal carcinoma in situ. Over a 10-year period, 471 women died from breast cancer, while 42,229 died from other causes.
Researchers analyzed who is not likely to benefit of screening mammography after 75 years of age. They studied more than 220,000 women over a 10-year period using Medicare claims data and the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium — the largest dataset of older women who receive mammograms.
“Cumulative incidence of other cause death was many times higher than breast cancer incidence and death, depending on comorbidity and age. Hence, older women with increased comorbidity may experience diminished benefit from continued screening,” the authors concluded.
The findings were published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute last week.