FEWER MAMMOGRAMS DURING PANDEMIC

Oct 12, 2022

By Christine Ross

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Almost 400-thousand fewer mammograms were performed during the pandemic than originally anticipated.

That alarming figure from the Ontario Medical Association which says that although screenings have now returned to normal levels, the temporary decrease has led to cases of breast cancer that were further along when diagnosed.

Dr. Jean Seeley says about half of breast cancer cases diagnosed at the Ottawa Hospital before the pandemic were detected through mammogram screening, but that number dropped to less than one-third during the pandemic.

“And this means that over 70% are diagnosed because they have a symptom of breast cancer, typically because they present with a lump that is either the woman found herself or by their family physician,” said Seeley.

The OMA says survival rates of women with breast cancer decline if the detection of the disease is delayed.

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