31 Days of “Little Known” FACTS — For Breast Cancer Awareness Month — Day 2 — Dense Breast Tissue

Did you know…

“Between 30% and 50% of cancers identified in women who undergo screening mammography are not detected by mammography.” – Dr. Christiane Kuhl, University of Aachen, Germany.

Sadly Nancy Cappello’s invasive cancer was missed by mammograms. She founded a nonprofit organization, Are You Dense, to alert women about dense breast tissue masking invasive breast cancers on mammography. Watch this video where she discusses her false negative “Happygram” with Joan Lunden:

Dense breast tissue is one of the strongest predictors of the failure of mammography screening to detect cancer.

Five more facts about dense breast tissue

  • 40% of women have dense breast tissue.
  • Two-thirds of pre-menopausal women and 1/4 of post menopausal women have dense breast tissue. 
  • Mammography misses every other cancer in dense breasts.
  • Breast density is a well-established predictor of breast cancer risk.
  • High breast density is a greater risk factor than having two first degree relatives with breast cancer.

Sources: Are You Dense? ; Are You Dense? Advocacy

Thank you Nancy Capello for your groundbreaking work.

You can read about alternative imaging for women with dense breast tissue here:

Bye-Bye Mammograms: Hello SonoCiné Ultrasound

About Donna Pinto

I was born and raised in New Jersey and moved to the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles when I was 12. I graduated with a BA in Journalism/Advertising from San Diego State University. After a short stint in magazine ad sales in LA, I was offered my dream job working for Club Med. I spent two years working at resorts in Mexico, The Bahamas, The Dominican Republic and Colorado. My husband Glenn & I met while working at Club Med in Ixtapa, Mexico. We returned to "real life/jobs" for three years before we embarked on a two year honeymoon around the world. Together we wrote a book called "When The Travel Bug Bites: Creative Ways to Earn, Save and Stay Abroad." I am also the author of "Cheatnotes on Life: Lessons From The Classroom of Life," a quote book for new graduates. Becoming a mom changed my life and I was fortunate to work part-time from home with many amazing nonprofits. In 2010, a DCIS diagnosis inspired me to an investigation that culminated in creating DCIS 411 and Give Wellness.
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