Mammograms and Mortality: How Has the Evidence Evolved?

32 Pages Posted: 5 Apr 2021 Last revised: 14 May 2021

See all articles by Amanda Kowalski

Amanda Kowalski

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor - Department of Economics

Date Written: April 2021

Abstract

Decades of evidence reveal a complicated relationship between mammograms and mortality. Mammograms may detect deadly cancers early, but they may also lead to the diagnosis and potentially fatal treatment of cancers that would never progress to cause symptoms. I provide a brief history of the evidence on mammograms and mortality, focusing on evidence from clinical trials, and I discuss how this evidence informs mammography guidelines. I then explore the evolution of all-cause mortality relative to breast cancer mortality within an influential clinical trial. I conclude with some responses to the evolving evidence.

Suggested Citation

Kowalski, Amanda, Mammograms and Mortality: How Has the Evidence Evolved? (April 2021). NBER Working Paper No. w28648, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3819551

Amanda Kowalski (Contact Author)

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor - Department of Economics ( email )

Ann Arbor, MI
United States

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