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Mammograms Are to Blame for Cases of Cancer Misdiagnosis

Dr. Joseph Dillard, a radiologist with Eastern Radiological Associates in Montana, explains that mammograms, although vital in diagnosing cancer, are typically near impossible to read, which contribute to breast cancer misdiagnosis.

“It’s white on white—white tumors on white breast tissue” he states, comparing it to searching for a snowman in a blizzard or spotting a star on a cloudy night.

Radiologist Against Reading Mammograms

Dillard’s and hundreds of other radiologists in America are refusing to read mammograms anymore, which could eventually limit women’s access to the cancer screening tests.

In regards to using mammograms as a detector of cancer, Dillard’s says, “This saves lives more than anything else we do.”

Why Not Attempt to Save lives?

Since missed breast cancer is the most common basis for medical malpractice lawsuits, radiologists don’t want to take the risk of being sued by using the hard to read mammograms.

“It’s not a foolproof test,” explains Dr. Kathleen Ryan, also a radiologist at Eastern Radiological Associates, “unfortunately many women think it is.” In turn, more women are suing doctors for a cancer misdiagnosis when the mammogram proves to be incorrect.

The percentage of women who are asked to come back for an additional mammogram reading after the initial time is double what it is in Britain even though the number of people diagnosed with breast cancer are the same.

Radiologists are also the ones sued for cancer misdiagnosis before gynecologist, even though in many cases, gynecologists fail to detect the cancer too.

(Source: Alternet.org)

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