Facebook Twitter Instagram You Tube Pinterest LinkedIn RSS Podcasts Video Library Blog
 - Northwestern Memorial Hospital - Chicago

Screening Guidelines

Early detection is the key to successfully treating breast cancer. Take control of your breast health by following the screening guidelines outlined below:

General population with average risk

  • Periodic breast self exam encouraged for women of all ages
  • Clinical breast exam every one to three years between the ages of 20 and 39
  • Annual clinical breast exam by age 40
  • Annual mammogram starting at age 40 (some doctors are suggesting baseline mammograms at age 35)

Strong family history or known genetic mutation carriers

  • Periodic breast self-exam encouraged for women of all ages
  • Annual clinical breast exam for women 24 years of age and under
  • Semi-annual clinical breast exam by age 25
  • Annual mammograms by age 25 for mutation carriers, and 5-10 years prior to earliest age of diagnosis in any family member for patients with a strong family history of breast cancer
  • Consider annual breast MRI (stagger MRI and mammogram so as to obtain imaging every six months)

Personal history of LCIS/Atypical hyperplasia

  • Periodic breast self-exam encouraged for women of all ages
  • Semi-annual clinical breast exam
  • Annual mammogram

Personal history of breast cancer

  • Periodic breast self-exam encouraged for women of all ages
  • If previous history of breast conserving therapy (i.e., lumpectomy, excisional biopsy, segmental mastectomy) the affected breast should be imaged with mammography every six months for the first two years following diagnosis and then annually thereafter
  • The unaffected breast continues to be imaged with mammography on an annual basis
  • Mammography of the affected side is not routinely recommended in women with a history of mastectomy with reconstruction, although institutional recommendations vary
Last UpdateOctober 14, 2011