Originally published April 1 2008
Mammograms Don't Help, They Harm Women
by Jo Hartley
(NaturalNews) Breast cancer kills women. In fact, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in women. Lung cancer is number one.
It is estimated that 211,240 women were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005. 40,410 have since died from the disease. These deaths should not have occurred. There is a potentially fatal flaw in our medical profession's diagnostic procedure.
Could mammograms cause cancer?
The standard method for early cancer detection is mammography. A mammogram is a procedure during which an X-ray picture of the breast is taken that can reveal tumor growths that may be otherwise undetectable. Like all x-rays, mammograms utilize doses of ionizing radiation to create this image. The image is then analyzed for any abnormal growths. Mammography is now receiving sizable opposition because of high error rates and high radiation levels involved in the procedure.
The rate of false positives and false negatives is alarming. 70 to 80 percent of all positive mammograms do not show any presence of cancer upon biopsy. Additionally, mammograms have a high rate of missed tumors (false negatives). In the book The Politics of Cancer, Dr. Samuel S. Epstein claims that in women ages 40 to 49, 25% have their cancer missed by mammography.
Many women depend on an annual mammogram to diagnose breast cancer. Recent studies show, however, that an annual mammogram may actually increase your risk of developing breast cancer from 1 to 3 percent. This is because the breast is one of the parts of the body most sensitive to radiation exposure. It is second only to fetal tissue.
In addition, by the age of 50 approximately 45 percent of women will have cancer cells present in their breasts. These cells remain dormant in most women. However, if you are in this group of women, you are at an increased risk of these cells becoming active.
Research has uncovered a gene, called oncogene AC that is highly sensitive to even small doses of radiation. A significant percentage of women have this gene and this could increase their risk of mammography-induced cancer.
Since mammograms were introduced, the occurrence of a form of breast cancer called ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) has increased by over 300 percent. Two hundred percent of this increase is thought to be due to mammography.
Mammography may also contribute to the spread of existing cancer cells due to the enormous pressure placed on the woman's breast during the procedure. According to some physicians, this compression may even cause existing cancer cells to metastasize from the affected breast tissue.
Russell L. Blaylock, MD, estimates that annual radiological breast exams increase the risk of breast cancer by two percent a year. Over a 10 year period the risk will have increased by 20 percent.
Another estimation is that one rad increases the breast cancer risk by one percent and is the equivalent of one year's natural aging. Hence, if a woman has yearly mammograms from age 55 to age 75, she will receive at least 20 rads of radiation.
The mainstream medical establishment is largely ignoring safe and effective alternatives to mammography.
One such option is digital mammography. This is a mammogram in which x-ray film is replaced by solid-state detectors that convert x-rays into electric signals. Though radiation is still used, this kind of digital mammography requires a much smaller amount. The electrical signals are used to create images that can be electronically manipulated. A physician can enhance, magnify and optimize different parts of the breast tissue digital image without having to take an additional image.
Mammography will extend at the most 2 lives for every 10,000 women put at risk. All to the benefit of physicians, the American Cancer Society, various bureaucrats, and other parties who continue to profit off the huge, highly efficient mammography deceit – while safe alternatives exist!
About the authorJo Hartley
Wife, Mother of 8, and Grandmother of 2
Jo is a 41 year old home educator who has always gravitated toward a natural approach to life. She enjoys learning as much as possible about just about anything!
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