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Many doctors to stay course on breast exams for now

New York Times, November 18, 2009

Despite new recommendations that most women start breast screening at 50 rather than 40, many doctors told the New York Times that they were simply not ready to make such a drastic change. The recommendations, issued by a federal advisory panel, reversed widely promoted guidelines and were intended to reduce overtreatment. The panel said the benefits of screening women in their 40s were outweighed by the potential for unnecessary tests and treatment, and the accompanying anxiety. Several doctors said that while they understood the panel's risk-benefit analysis, their patients would not see it that way, the Times reports.