Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Immediate mammogram reading may decrease stress associated with abnormal results

07.04.2004


Women who receive the results of their screening mammograms immediately after their examination have less stress and anxiety compared with women who have to wait several days for their test results, according to a study in the April 7 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Surprisingly, however, an educational intervention that taught skills to cope with anxiety was not associated with decreased anxiety among a similar group of women.



In the United States, 5% to 11% of all screening mammograms result in a recommendation for follow-up to eliminate the possibility of breast cancer, and of those recommended for follow-up, 95% will turn out to be false-positives (abnormal mammograms that do not result in a breast cancer diagnosis within 1 year). Women who are told they have an abnormal mammogram and need a follow-up evaluation often experience anxiety and distress, even when further evaluation does not find breast cancer.

To study ways to help decrease the anxiety and stress associated with abnormal mammograms, Mary B. Barton, M.D., of Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Boston, and colleagues evaluated the psychological status of women undergoing screening mammograms who received one of two interventions, both interventions, or no intervention. One intervention consisted of providing women with a video and a pamphlet during their office visit that explained breast cancer risk, the reasons for abnormal mammograms, and coping strategies for dealing with the results. The second intervention involved the immediate reading of the mammograms by a radiologist so that any follow-up tests needed (except for a biopsy) could be conducted immediately in the same office visit.


There were 6801 (80%) women who had normal mammograms and 1742 (20%) women who had abnormal mammograms that were later classified as false-positives. (Women who were diagnosed with breast cancer as a result of their screening mammogram were excluded from the study.) Three weeks after their mammograms, 50% of women who had a false-positive reading reported having symptoms of anxiety about the mammogram, compared with 28% of women with normal mammograms. Overall, 3 months after their mammograms, women who had false-positive mammograms still had an elevated level of anxiety.

Three weeks after their mammogram, women with false-positive readings who received the results of their mammogram immediately reported less anxiety than women who had to wait several days to receive their results. Furthermore, more than half of these women reported that their mammogram had been normal, which suggests, the authors say, that the immediate completion of follow-up may have minimized the effect of a false-positive reading to the extent that they never perceived their mammogram as being abnormal.

In contrast, women with false-positive results who were given the educational intervention did not report less stress or anxiety than women who did not receive the educational materials. "Our finding that the radiology intervention was associated with less anxiety than the educational intervention indicates that rapid evaluation of mammographic abnormalities may be a more effective approach to decreasing women’s anxieties than trying to change emotional reactions to an abnormal mammogram," the authors write.


Contact: John Lacey, Harvard Medical School, 617-432-0441, John_Lacey@hms.harvard.edu

Citation:
Barton MB, Morley DS, Moore S, Allen JD, Kleinman KP, Emmons KM, Fletcher SW. Decreasing women’s anxieties after abnormal mammograms: a controlled trial. J Natl Cancer Inst 2004;96:529–38.

Katherine Arnold | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://jncicancerspectrum.oupjournals.org/

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Amazingly flexible: Learning to read in your thirties profoundly transforms the brain
26.05.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften

nachricht Fixating on faces
26.01.2017 | California Institute of Technology

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Study shines light on brain cells that coordinate movement

26.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Smooth propagation of spin waves using gold

26.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Switchable DNA mini-machines store information

26.06.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>