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RSNA Press Release

International Celebration Spotlights Breast Imaging Advances
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Released: November 1, 2016

Reinforces Importance of Annual Mammography Screening Beginning at Age 40 and Role that Radiology Plays in Detection, Diagnosis and Management of Breast Diseases

Washington, DC (Nov. 1, 2016) — On Tuesday, Nov. 8, more than 140 medical societies worldwide will mark the International Day of Radiology (IDoR), celebrating the thousands of lives saved by the many contributions of breast imagers and radiation oncologists.

IDoR 2016 will spotlight breast imaging and the essential role that radiology plays in the detection, diagnosis and management of breast disease. This special day, commemorating the 121st anniversary of the discovery of the X-ray by German physicist Wilhelm Roentgen, is sponsored by the American College of Radiology (ACR), Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and European Society of Radiology (ESR). The day is also supported by the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) and European Society of Breast Imaging (EUSOBI), and the radiation safety campaigns of Image Wisely® and EuroSafe Imaging. IDoR 2016 will also include celebrations during National Radiologic Technology Week (Nov. 6–12).

Since mammography use became widespread in the 1980s, breast cancer deaths have plummeted nearly 40 percent. Besides markedly reducing the number of women who may die from breast cancer, mammograms detect cancer early — when it is most treatable. Many major medical organizations with expertise in breast cancer care, including the ACR, RSNA, the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), and SBI recommend that women start getting annual mammograms at age 40.

"The International Day of Radiology recognizes the fact that regular mammography not only saves lives, but preserves quality of life. Mammography use cuts the risk of dying from breast cancer nearly in half and enables less extensive treatment for any cancers found. I strongly encourage women to begin getting annual mammograms at age 40," said Debra Monticciolo, MD, FACR, chair of the ACR Commission on Breast Imaging.

"There is no question that we have come a long way in the detection and treatment of breast cancer. Mammography, ultrasound, breast MRI and newer technologies like digital tomosynthesis — sometimes called 3-D mammography — help identify cancer at its earliest and most treatable stage. Image-guided and radiation therapy techniques have allowed us to manage and treat cancer more precisely and less invasively. We celebrate the International Day of Radiology only one day a year, but breast imaging saves lives every day," said Mary C. Mahoney, MD, RSNA board liaison for publications and communications.

"Breast cancer incidence goes up substantially around age 40. In fact, women ages 40–44 are twice as likely to develop breast cancer as those 35–39. Mammography is the only breast cancer test clinically proven to save lives. Women should discuss getting an annual mammogram with their doctors," said Elizabeth Morris, MD, FACR, SBI president.

Patients are the primary focus of all radiologic care, which is highlighted through the RSNA Radiology Cares initiative, the ACR Commission on Patient- and Family-Centered Care and SBI's End the Confusion program. ACR and RSNA jointly sponsor RadiologyInfo.org, an online consumer resource that explains medical imaging tests and treatments in detailed, easy-to-understand language, helping patients to understand and prepare for imaging procedures. Visit the International Day of Radiology website for information on related activities; the Mammography Saves Lives website also offers consumer breast cancer screening resources.

About the American College of Radiology
The American College of Radiology (ACR), founded in 1924, is a professional medical society dedicated to serving patients and society by empowering radiology professionals to advance the practice, science and professions of radiological care. (ACR.org)

About the Radiological Society of North America
The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) is an association of more than 54,000 radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and related scientists, promoting excellence in patient care and health care delivery through education, research and technologic innovation. The Society is based in Oak Brook, Ill. (RSNA.org)

About the Society of Breast Imaging
The Society of Breast Imaging (SBI), established in 1985, is a professional medical organization dedicated to improving the practice of breast imaging and the quality of medical education in breast imaging. The SBI also provides a medium for the exchange of ideas among those involved in breast imaging. The SBI includes leading international breast imaging specialists nationwide among its membership. (SBI-online.org)

To arrange an interview with an ACR member, please contact Shawn Farley at 703-648-8936, Maryann Verrillo at 703-390-9822 or email PR@acr.org.

To arrange an interview with an RSNA member, please contact Emma Day at 630-590-7791 or email eday@rsna.org.

To arrange an interview with an SBI member, please contact Tim Tassa at 202-263-2580 or ttassa@amplifypublicaffairs.net.