News & Comment

Mammography: NCI Reverses One Expert Panel, Sides With Another

Science  04 Apr 1997:
Vol. 276, Issue 5309, pp. 27-28
DOI: 10.1126/science.276.5309.27

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Summary

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) recommended last week that women in their forties should get mammograms every 1 to 2 years. The announcement came just 5 days after the American Cancer Society stated first that it favored yearly mammograms for 40-something women. This apparent harmony, however, masks a highly contentious debate in which different groups of scientists have come to different conclusions about the same set of data. And the debate has been tainted by political pressure from the U.S. Congress, which has put many of the researchers involved in a highly uncomfortable position.

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