According to the World Health Organization, breast cancer kills more than 500 000 women worldwide every year, and mammography is the only breast cancer screening method that has proved to be effective in organized programs. But recommendations for mammography must weigh the benefits of an early diagnosis against the risks of x-ray radiation damage. Standard dosimetry recognizes that of the three breast tissues—skin, fatty, and fibroglandular—the last is the one truly at risk for damage from x rays. Models for simulating radiation dose in mammography routinely use a homogeneous mixture of fibroglandular and fatty tissue, covered by a layer of skin. But real breast anatomy is heterogeneous, with glandular tissue preferentially located near the breast’s center. A large study at the University of California, Davis, has now accounted for that heterogeneity. PhD candidate Andrew Hernandez told a gathering at the July meeting of the American Association of Physicists in Medicine...
Stephen G. Benka; Mammogram radiation risk is lower than thought. Physics Today 1 September 2015; 68 (9): 19. https://doi.org/10.1063/PT.3.2904
Download citation file:
Purchase an annual subscription for $25. A subscription grants you access to all of Physics Today's current and backfile content.