Study Finds Mammogram Misdiagnosis of Breast Cancer is Common

New research from the Harvard School of Public Health suggests that the risk of misdiagnosis
from routine mammograms
may be higher than previously thought. According to the study, approximately 10 women are misdiagnosed after a routine mammogram for every woman who is correctly diagnosed.

The problem of incorrectly diagnosing a woman with breast cancer is not insignificant. A woman may face invasive tests such as biopsies and significant stress if a mammogram indicates a cancer that is not really there.

Accordingly, researchers are urging doctors and patients to balance the risk with the potential benefits of mammograms and to come to individual conclusions about what is best for an individual patient. There is no doubt that cancer screening tools such as mammograms have saved lives. However, doctors are still responsible for exercising reasonable care for each individual patient so that unnecessary medical harm is not done.