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Volume 1, Number 2 ----- Fall/Winter 1998


Because You Asked


What is the difference between a chest x-ray and a mammogram?

Both chest x-rays and mammograms use x-ray technology to see if a person has disease. However, doctors do not know if chest x-rays, which provide a picture of the lungs, can help save lives from lung cancer. The PLCO trial will determine if deaths from lung cancer can be reduced by using chest x-rays as a screening test before a person has signs of disease.

Doctors do know from screening studies like the PLCO that mammograms (quick and easy x-ray pictures of the breasts) can help save lives from breast cancer for women in the age range of the PLCO study. Mammograms are not foolproof, but cancers that are found on screening mammograms are often too small for a woman or her doctor to feel and they are less likely to have spread to other parts of the body.

For more information, call 1-800-4-CANCER.