The American Cancer Society advises all women to have an annual mammogram regardless of age as long as they remain in good physical condition, notes Marla Ahlgrimm. Although women age 75 and older have often been told that mammograms are unnecessary at their age, she acknowledges the benefits of maintaining this habit throughout the entirety of life.
Q: Why are regular mammograms such an important aspect of a woman’s health?
Marla Ahlgrimm: Mammography offers physicians and medical researchers the ability to detect breast cancer at a time when risk of death is negligible and the disease is more treatable. If breast cancer has not been previously detected by a mammogram, women have a far greater risk of advanced stage disease. Regardless of age or physical condition, women should be consulting with their primary care physician on a regular basis. Annual checkups are strongly recommended.