Feature | March 19, 2010

Ground Zero in Breast Cancer Battle

Vivek Mehta, M.D., is a radiation oncologist at Swedish Cancer Institute, Seattle, and a new member of the ITN Editorial Advisory Board.

Ground zero in the battle against breast cancer flared up when the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued revised guidelines on breast screening. The committee said women should start annual screenings for breast cancer at age 50 instead of 40, a radical departure from the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) recommendations, which advocate starting annual mammograms at age 40. While the ACS and ACR are influential groups, the USPSTF will no doubt influence some doctors, insurance companies and policy makers.

This debate draws special attention to the women’s imaging centers across the United States, and how they approach preventative care and treatment. To this end, Imaging Technology News (ITN) asked you to nominate the centers you believe to be leaders in women’s imaging technology and patient care, which are featured in the March issue article, Top Women’s Imaging Centers of 2010. What we have found over the years is that the top qualifying centers tend to be early adopters of new technology, participants in clinical trials, and many apply novel techniques. They also place a premium on patient care and use advanced IT solutions to support workflow. But what is most essential to affecting positive patient outcomes is the team of radiologists, radiation and medical oncologists, nurses, pathologists, breast surgeons, and the other staff, working together to deliver care. These are the people on the front lines, fighting the good fight alongside the patients.

Note: Vivek Mehta, M.D., is a member of the ITN Editorial Advisory Board.

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