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OAK BROOK, Ill. – Medicare beneficiaries who undergo breast cancer screening with mammography are more likely than unscreened women to undergo other preventive health services like screening for cervical cancer and osteoporosis, according to a major new study appearing online in the journal Radiology. Researchers found that even false-positive mammography findings did not reduce the likelihood of women utilizing these other preventive services.

Mammography is among the most commonly offered preventive services for women ages 40 years and older, making it a potentially significant influencer of adherence to other preventive services guidelines. However, little is known about the association between screening mammography and use of a variety of preventive services in the Medicare population, along with the impact of false-positive mammographic findings on preventive services use.

For the new study, researchers from NYU School of Medicine in New York, Emory University in Atlanta, and the Harvey L. Neiman Health Policy Institute in Reston, Va., set out to learn more about these associations.

“There were two overarching ideas to this study,” said Stella Kang, M.D., M.Sc., assistant professor of radiology and population health at NYU School of Medicine. “First, we wanted to examine the potential for a patient’s experience with

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