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Publisher's Summary

In 2009, an influential panel of medical experts ignited a controversy when they recommended that most women should not begin routine mammograms to screen for breast cancer until the age of 50, reversing guidelines they had issued just seven years before when they recommended 40 as the optimal age to start getting mammograms. Many women’s groups, health care advocates, and individual women saw the guidelines as privileging financial considerations over women’s health and a setback to decades-long efforts to reduce the mortality rate of breast cancer.

In The Big Squeeze, Dr. Handel Reynolds, a practicing radiologist, notes that this episode was only the most recent controversy in the turbulent history of mammography since its introduction in the early 1970s. Pivotal decisions made it all but inevitable that the test would be contentious. He describes how, at several key points in its history, the emphasis on mammography screening as a fundamental aspect of women’s preventive health care coincided with social and political developments, from the women’s movement in the early 1970s to breast cancer activism in the 1980s and ’90s. At the same time, aggressive promotion of mammography made the screening tool the cornerstone of a huge new industry.

The Big Squeeze ultimately helps to evaluate the ongoing public health controversies surrounding mammography and provides a clear understanding of how mammography achieved its current primacy in cancer screening.

The book is published by Cornell University Press. The audiobook is published by University Press Audiobooks.

"I...highly recommend it to everybody." (The Lancet Oncology)

"A fascinating and enlightening 50-year journey." (Journal of the American Medical Association)

"A terrific job in telling the story of mammographic screening." (Susan M. Love, MD, author of Dr. Susan Love's Breast Book)

©2012 Cornell University (P)2021 Redwood Audiobooks

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