A new 'social conversation' on Facebook, My Breast My Test, is launched
to help clear up the confusion. Breast screening saves lives.
TORONTO, April 24, 2014 /CNW/ - Seven in ten (68%) Canadian women say they are confused by conflicting information about mammography and 42 per cent say they "don't know" whether the benefits of breast cancer screening outweigh the risks, a new poll shows.
And almost half of all Canadian women - 45 per cent - say the conflicting information about breast cancer screening makes them question whether they need to be screened at all, according to the national Ipsos Reid survey released today by Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF) to mark the launch of the social site www.facebook.com/mybreastmytest.
"The confusion about the benefits and limitations of mammography and the number of women across Canada now questioning the need to be screened is extremely concerning to us," said CBCF Ontario CEO Sandra Palmaro.
"It's time to end the debate about breast cancer screening. We should not see even one woman die because she decided it didn't matter whether or not she was screened. Screening saves lives."
The new site, www.facebook.com/mybreastmytest, invites women to share their experiences and concerns and ask questions about the issue. In addition, CBCF will post updated evidence-based information about screening and early detection as it becomes available.
Among those sharing their views on the page is Brenda Stover of Tillsonburg, Ontario, who had no history of breast cancer and no plans to be screened when she visited CBCF's breast health mobile information centre last summer. She registered to be screened and was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer.
"I've talked to women who feel confused - more than ever before - by contradictory information they hear in the media or see online about breast cancer screening mammography," Stover said. "I just want to tell everyone that getting a mammogram saved my life."
Her observations are reflected in the poll on a national basis. In terms of women questioning whether they should be screened, the numbers were consistent across Canada despite varying provincial approaches to screening: 49 per cent in British Columbia, 42 per cent in Alberta, 47 per cent in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, 45 per cent in Ontario and 42 per cent in Atlantic Canada. Results on other questions were also mostly uniform across the regions1.
The CBCF poll also found that:
- 75 per cent of Canadian women agree there is "a lot of contradictory information out there about breast cancer screening."
- 71 per cent of Canadian women said they are "sometimes confused about what is true and what is not when it comes to breast cancer screening."
- 45 per cent of Canadian women question whether they should get screened at all, based on the conflicting information they've seen.
- 84 per cent of women say they would always choose a screening test that never misses a cancer but 1-in-10 tests are false alarms, and only 16 per cent favoured a test that misses 1-in-3 cancers but causes no false alarms.
- 4-in-10 Canadian women (41 per cent) say they are more confused about mammography than they were 5 years ago.
About Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation
Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation is the leading community driven organization in Canada dedicated to creating a future without breast cancer. Our investments in innovative and relevant research and education have led to progress in breast cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care. Since 1986, we have been at the forefront of a nationwide movement supporting and advocating for the breast cancer community. Join us at www.cbcf.org.
1 Quebec was not part of the survey
Image with caption: "Brenda Stover of Tillsonburg, ON says that getting a mammogram saved her life. (CNW Group/Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140424_C4956_PHOTO_EN_39585.jpg
SOURCE: Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation
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