Screening for breast cancer
Screening means checking for a disease in a group of people who don’t show any symptoms of the disease. Screening tests help find breast cancer before any symptoms develop. When breast cancer is found and treated early, the chances of successful treatment are better. Follow breast screening guidelines even when you feel well and healthy.
Provincial and territorial screening programs use screening mammography. A mammography is a low-dose x-ray of the breast. It is the most reliable way to find breast cancer early in women.
Women should be aware of the benefits and limitations of screening mammography based on their age and risk factors to help decide if it is right for them. Talk with your doctor to help make your decision.
If you are 40 to 49 years old, talk to your doctor about your risk for breast cancer, along with the benefits and limitations of having a mammogram.
If you are 50 to 74 years old, have a mammogram every 2 years.
If you are 75 or older, talk to your doctor about whether having a mammogram is right for you.
Find out more about breast cancer screening.
Great progress has been made
Some cancers, such as thyroid and testicular, have survival rates of over 90%. Other cancers, such as pancreatic, brain and esophageal, continue to have very low survival rates.