The Masking Effect: Dense Breasts and Women’s Health
By Matt Skoufalos, April 1, 2019
For years, women’s health care advocates have pushed legislators at every level of government to pass breast density inform laws: regulations requiring providers to notify their patients about whether they have dense breast tissue as a component of their mammogram reports. Their efforts led to such laws being adopted in nearly 40 U.S. states, and finally, in February 2019, to a breast density inform bill being signed into federal law with the latest Congressional appropriations bill. The new federal law mandates that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) develop standardized language for mammography reports that includes a qualitative assessment of patients’ breast densities, information about the difficulty in detecting cancer in dense breast tissue via traditional mammography, and a reminder that patients should consult their doctors if they have questions on the subject.
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