12 doctors weighed in:

If mammogram suggests cancer at 85, will most women die from it or with it?

12 doctors weighed in
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
Radiation Oncology
5 doctors agree

In brief: Mammogram may

Detect a lump or calcium, but you do not if its cancer or what kind until biopsy or removal.
If it turns out not to be cancer, no sweat. Intraductal (dcis), unlikely to be cause of death. If invasive, depends on size, receptors. Treatment can be simple and not a burden, so a lot depends on frailty and hardiness of the 85 year old. Find out what she worries about...Probably not death but comfort.

In brief: Mammogram may

Detect a lump or calcium, but you do not if its cancer or what kind until biopsy or removal.
If it turns out not to be cancer, no sweat. Intraductal (dcis), unlikely to be cause of death. If invasive, depends on size, receptors. Treatment can be simple and not a burden, so a lot depends on frailty and hardiness of the 85 year old. Find out what she worries about...Probably not death but comfort.
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
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Dr. Michael Gabor
Diagnostic Radiology
2 doctors agree

In brief: It depends

First, cancer must be confirmed with a biopsy.
Then, it depends on the specifics of the cancer. A small early stage cancer is curable, so an 85 year old may not necessarily die from it or with it.

In brief: It depends

First, cancer must be confirmed with a biopsy.
Then, it depends on the specifics of the cancer. A small early stage cancer is curable, so an 85 year old may not necessarily die from it or with it.
Dr. Michael Gabor
Dr. Michael Gabor
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Dr. Gene Wong
Radiation Oncology
1 doctor agrees

In brief: It's very treatable

Generally speaking, breast cancer at older age tends to be less aggressive.
If mammogram shows suspicious disease regardless of age, it has to be biopsied to confirm. If it's early stage cancer, paritial mastectomy may be adequate and depending on the pathology, she may just need some oral antiestrogen pill. Radiation may not be necessary but again it depdends on a lot of factors. Very treatable.

In brief: It's very treatable

Generally speaking, breast cancer at older age tends to be less aggressive.
If mammogram shows suspicious disease regardless of age, it has to be biopsied to confirm. If it's early stage cancer, paritial mastectomy may be adequate and depending on the pathology, she may just need some oral antiestrogen pill. Radiation may not be necessary but again it depdends on a lot of factors. Very treatable.
Dr. Gene Wong
Dr. Gene Wong
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Dr. Michael Korona
Radiology - Interventional

In brief: Not usually

Cancers of breast may be less aggressive in very old patients.
See breast surgeon for treatment plan.

In brief: Not usually

Cancers of breast may be less aggressive in very old patients.
See breast surgeon for treatment plan.
Dr. Michael Korona
Dr. Michael Korona
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Dr. Sumit Sawhney
Internal Medicine - Oncology

In brief: Unlikely

Depends on receptor status and stage but highlyunlikely that a tumor picked up on mammogram will be fatal at that age.

In brief: Unlikely

Depends on receptor status and stage but highlyunlikely that a tumor picked up on mammogram will be fatal at that age.
Dr. Sumit Sawhney
Dr. Sumit Sawhney
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