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Breast Self Exams May Not Reduce Cancer Deaths

I have long believed that breast self-exam was a reasonable alternative to mammography, which is filled with dangers. Now new research that will be released on Tuesday suggests that this is not the case. European researchers conducted and analyzed a randomized controlled trial of breast self exam in nearly 100,000 Russian women between 1985 and 2003. Even though the women had been taught how to examine their breasts correctly, there was no reduction in deaths from breast cancer in the breast self exam group. This research is very early and only being presented at a conference and it will likely be a year before it is formally published and we can carefully analyze any flaws in their analysis.

4th European Breast Cancer Conference March 16, 2004

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