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Screening FAQs

What is the high risk screening regime?

What is the high risk breast cancer screening regime?
Recommendations on the type and frequency of breast cancer screening depend on your age, family history, level of risk and other features such as mammographic breast density and general health. A plan taking into account these personal features is best formulated by a doctor.

At present, 2D mammography is used by the vast majority of BreastScreen Australia centres for screening purposes and has been considered to be the most effective population primary test for breast cancer in women aged 50–74 years.1 One of the latest methods for diagnostic testing is the 3D mammography exam. This newer technology helps to eliminate most detection challenges associated with conventional 2D mammography in a diagnostic setting.2,3 This may be performed in conjunction with an Ultrasound and/or MRI exam.

Although all women could potentially benefit from a 3D mammography exam, the following high-risk groups may be more suited to a diagnostic referral for 3D mammography:

  • Those with a strong family history of breast or ovarian cancers
  • Women with dense breasts, e.g. those aged <50 years not actively targeted by the national screening program
  • Women with any breast changes, signs or symptoms
  • Women with a previous diagnosis of breast disease or those requiring further assessment following a 2D exam

A GP referral is required for a 3D mammography exam. If your doctor advises you that a 3D mammogram may be right for you, click here to find a clinic offering 3D exams.

More information on understanding your risk and risk management options can be found on the Pink Hope website under Am I at Risk?

What support and resources are available?

Support and Resources
There are several healthcare professionals who may provide care and support during your journey. These include GPs, specialist nurses, specialist doctors, psychologists and clinical genetic specialists. These professionals can help explain all of the available information regarding risk prevention, surveillance, screening, treatment, and post-treatment options.

Other useful resources:
Cancer Australia
Centre for Genetics Education

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