Gorovitz & Borten, P.C.
Attorneys at Law

550 Cochituate Road, SUite 25
Framingham, Massachusetts
Tel: (781) 890-9095
Misread Mammogram
Mammograms are performed for two reasons. A screening mammogram is
performed on a patient of appropriate age who has no signs or symptoms
suspicious of breast cancer. A diagnostic mammogram is performed on a patient at
any age who has any signs or symptom associated with breast cancer.

Screening mammography is the preferred examination for asymptomatic woman at
risk for breast cancer. Current recommendations for screening mammography in
women without a family history of breast cancer include a baseline mammogram
between ages 35 and 40 followed by a biennial mammogram between ages 40 and
49 and annual mammograms after age 50.

Diagnostic mammograms are employed to evaluate the breasts of a woman
presenting with a breast complaint (breast lump, breast mass, thickening, nipple
discharge) or with a suspicious finding on a previous mammogram
(microcalcifications). At times, spot magnification mammograms are required to
clarify some dubious finding on a standard mammogram.

Interpretation of mammograms have been standardized. The American College of
Radiology (ACR) has established a Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-
RADS) to facilitate comparison between mammographers. BI-RADS assessment
categories are as follows:

  • Category 0:  Need additional imaging evaluation
  • Category 1:  Negative
  • Category 2:  Benign finding, noncancerous
  • Category 3:  Probably benign finding, short interval follow-up suggested
  • Category 4:  Suspicious abnormality, biopsy considered
  • Category 5:  Highly suggestive of malignancy, appropriate action needed

The higher the BI-RADS category, the greater the risk that a mammographic
finding will be associated with a breast cancer on biopsy. Computed Tomography
(CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Ultrasonography are also adjuvant
methods of screening for breast cancer. The higher the risk for breast cancer, the
more modalities may be required to screen a particular woman.

It is extremely important to understand that a mammogram is not a fail-safe
technique. A patient may have a breast cancer and the mammogram be negative
because it fails to show a radiographic detectable abnormality. The medical
malpractice attorneys at Gorovitz & Borten will obtain the mammograms and have
them reviewed by experts in the field regardless whether the report of the
mammogram is originally read as normal.

The mammographic evaluation of young women with dense breasts is at times
extremely difficult. Use of ancillary techniques such as digitalized mammography,
magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and ultrasound must be considered before a
patient can be reassured of the benign nature of a breast lesion. Breast biopsy is
required when doubts still exist about the benign nature of a breast lesion.

A physician misreading or misinterpreting a mammographic study of a patient with
breast cancer would be the basis for a legitimate lawsuit for medical malpractice. If
you feel that your health care provider misread or misinterpreted your mammogram
and as a result  delayed in any way your diagnosis of breast cancer, contact us to
discuss your particular situation. Protecting your legal rights will benefit you and
your family. Furthermore, if you (or a loved one) are suffering from complications
due to a failure to timely diagnose, delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis of  breast
cancer, or the recommended screening guidelines were not followed, let
Dr. Borten
and our Boston area medical malpractice attorneys at Gorovitz & Borten evaluate
your case. We can help you assert your rights and get the compensation you
Contact Information
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possible), please contact us by phone, fax or e-mail with your question or concern.

Telephone:  781-890-9095     -     Fax:   781-890-9098
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