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When should I be screened for breast cancer?

Whatever your age, you should know what is normal for your breasts and tell your doctor if you notice any changes. Once you reach a certain age, you can also go for screening mammography, a low-dose x-ray. Mammography is the most reliable method of finding breast cancer.

Our recommendation

If you are 40 to 49

Talk to your doctor about your risk of breast cancer, along with the benefits and limitations of having a mammogram.

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If you are 50 to 74

Have a mammogram every 2 years.

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If you are 75 or older

Talk to your doctor about whether having a mammogram is right for you.

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.

Your doctor may also do a physical exam of your breasts (called a clinical breast examination) to check for signs of cancer.

Women at high risk for breast cancer may need to be tested more often and at an earlier age than women with average risk. Talk to your doctor about your risk.