Flow Chart of Dense Breast Mammography Recommendations



The National Cancer Institute in 2016 released it’s recommendations for routine digital mammography screening. I was diagnosed at 49 with stage 4 lobular invasive carcinoma with metastasis to the bones and liver. I’m now in my 7th year with this time bomb that kills 100% of the victims.

We did nothing wrong to deserve this yet many of us were not given the information required to make informed decisions. Or to demand MRIs and Ultrasounds. The first breast MRI I received was in the hospital when I was diagnosed. Could my metastasis have been prevented?

I do not know for sure,?but maybe. And maybe others won’t have to face their mortality like I am and countless others and the countless dead.

Speak up, ask questions and demand further testing. It might save your life.

4 comments on “Flow Chart of Dense Breast Mammography Recommendations”

  1. Thank you! One way to better screen for breast cancer (even in dense breasts) is to start EARLY (like 21) with an Abbreviated Breast MRI (AB-MRI). Lower cost (and less time) than a Full Breast MRI (FB-MRI). No CPT code — YET — but self-pay is about $200-$400. Which is less than the average copay through insurance for an FB-MRI. A list of clinics offering AB-MRI in the US (and Australia) can be found at SELF PAY CHOICES (timetobeseen.org). If you want to help persuade ‘the powers that be’ to provide a CPT code so even this lower cost for effective screening in covered with an even lower copay, consider Empower Action 1 (timetobeseen.org).

  2. I am reading the article associated with the flow chart, and something just occurred to me. While they recommend ultra sound and MRI, why not PET scans? PET scans are a combination of MRI and ultra sound. It was what I was given after the biopsy, and what the oncologist used to establish the treatment.plan.

    Ilene, I am so sorry for your experience. I wish that I had a superpower to heal.

    1. Me too. Now my superpower is exceptional responder. The mri is enough on its own. And way less radiation. The pet machines are also way more expensive (a technician can give and generally read an ultrasound) long ago when I wrote about my lumpectomy – it started with a mammogram- I said you won’t find anything that way. They had to do four separate ultrasounds to find the tumor and finally the head of radiology had to be called in to do it himself. I hope in the near the future the age women with dense breasts for regular3D mammograms is reduced from 50 to 40. I am from the time of bad decisions- that being one of them. The second being adding surgery to the protocols for otherwise healthy women with mbc. That’s sifting too after multiple 20 year long studies. I have to wonder if I wasn’t caught up in some insurance political experiment. But the price of non coverage is death.

  3. I’m looking forward to reading the report. My son recently had an experience, finding a lump beside the nipple of his left breast. My older nephew experienced the same thing. The difference is that with my nephew, the providers did a biopsy. On the other hand with my son, the provider did a mammogram and ultra sound, and said that the lump is a side-effect of medication he takes for cholesterol, and it should go away in 6 to 12 months. We are not satisfied with that so he’s seeing a surgeon for a biopsy.

    I’ve read enough blog posts from those who since died from inflammatory/triple negative breast cancer. In their situation, the correct diagnosis was missed. There is an assumption because I was diagnosed with Her2 positive, that if members of my family are going to get breast cancer, that it will be Her2 positive.

    We know what is said about assuming.

I welcome your comments!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.