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MRI usage for new breast cancer patients – researchers skeptical

Women who are advised to go in for an MRI after breast cancer diagnosis face a delay in commencement of treatment. Rather than breast conserving surgery, these women most likely are advised mastectomy.
According to a study in Washington DC by the breast cancer symposium of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, despite contrary evidence, there is widespread use of MRI. Dr.Richard J. Bleicher, Philadelphia’s Fox Chase Cancer Center’s co-director of breast surgery, there is indiscriminate usage of MRIs.

He also stated that using MRI as a routine in breast cancer in fact only delays commencement of treatment to a certain extent and it does not actually help in the choice of treatment options.
Use of MRI for newly diagnosed cases of breast cancer has been controversial though MRI screening of high-risk women for breast cancer is often recommended. According to Bleicher, it is wrongly believed that MRI which is more sensitive will improve screening of breast cancer in women. He went on to say there is no data supporting this belief.

Studies by Mayo Clinic researchers also show that there is a drastic increase in mastectomy since 1997 following MRI, which shows that double the numbers of patients are, advised mastectomy following MRI.
Bleicher and his team suggested postoperative use of MRI while some other researchers advocate more research and study on the appropriate usage of this procedure. Debbie Saslow, one of the directors at the American Cancer Society said a lot of research is needed to determine the extent to which MRI should be recommended.  

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