doctor_femalepatientAre You Dense Advocacy, a women’s breast density awareness group, is vigorously refuting the findings of a recent study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. According to Are You Dense Advocacy, the study, titled “Benefits, Harms, and Cost-Effectiveness of Supplemental Ultrasonography Screening for Women with Dense Breasts,” concludes that laws requiring supplemental ultrasound for women with dense breasts would increase healthcare costs without saving lives.

The study used computer-generated modeling to arrive at its findings, a method Nancy Cappello, PhD, founder of Are You Dense Advocacy, finds problematic.

“The future of technology changes so rapidly that this analysis lacks relevance to the now and beyond,” Cappello said. “And contrary to what the authors claim, of the 19 states that require women be notified in their mammography reporting results if they have dense breast tissue, none mandate or require that they have follow up screening, such as ultrasound. The mandates do promote, however, informed discussions on screening between patient and provider. ”

In the past year, several states have passed legislation requiring physicians to notify female patients if they have dense breasts. This past summer, legislators introduced federal bills in the House and Senate. Breast density has been linked to higher rates of breast cancer, as well as increased difficulty in spotting breast cancer through traditional mammography.

The full article is available for paid download at the Annals of Internal Medicine.