Breast cancer screening

by Ethan More
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Cancer screening includes evaluating seemingly healthy individuals for clues that cancer is forming. Breast screening involves mammography, which provides for obtaining x-rays of the breasts. Screening may help detect breast cancers that are too tiny to see or feel. These small breast cancers are typically more superficial to cure than bigger ones. It is crucial to note that screening does not prevent breast cancer; instead, it tries to detect early-stage breast cancers. Overall, the breast screening programme detects cancer in around 9 out of every 1,000 women screened.

Breast cancer is the most frequent cancer among women in Hong Kong, which places a substantial load on the city’s healthcare system. Because of this, Hong Kong breast cancer screening is very vast.

Several studies have been conducted to determine if the following breast cancer screening tests are beneficial in detecting breast cancer or helping people with breast cancer live longer lives.


A mammography is an x-ray that shows the interior of the breast. Mammography may detect cancers too tiny to feel. It could also discover ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). DCIS occurs when abnormal cells line the breast duct and may progress to invasive cancer in certain women.

Mammograms are classified into three types:

  • Mammography on film is an x-ray image of the breast.
  • A digital mammogram is a computerised image of the breast.
  • Digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) uses x-rays to capture a series of breast images from various angles. A computer processes these x-rays to create 3-D images of the breast.

Breast Examination

A clinical breast exam is a breast exam performed by a doctor or other health practitioner. They will feel the breasts and beneath the arms attentively for lumps or anything else that seems strange. It is unknown if having clinical breast examinations reduces the risk of dying from breast cancer. Both men and women may perform breast self-exams to check for lumps or other changes in their breasts. Speak with your doctor if you detect any lumps or other changes in your breasts. Regular breast self-examinations have not been proven to reduce the risk of dying from breast cancer.


Thermography is a method in which the temperature of the skin that covers the breasts is recorded using a specific camera that detects heat. Tumours may induce temperature variations, which can be seen on a thermogram. There have been no randomised clinical studies to determine how effectively thermography identifies breast cancer or the risks of the practice.

Tissue collection

A breast tissue sample removes cells from breast tissue for examination under a microscope. Breast tissue sampling has not been proven to reduce the risk of dying from breast cancer as a screening test.


In the majority of regions throughout the globe, breast cancer is the most prevalent kind of tumour seen in females. Even though it has levelled off in Western nations, the number of cases is rising in other continents. Because the causes of breast cancer are not fully understood, breast cancer prevention is challenging.

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