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Computer-Aided Mammograms Fail to Catch More Breast Cancers

  • Technology adds $400 million to annual U.S. health care bill
  • Study finds women get no benefit from Hologic, Icad equipment

Breast cancer screening performed with computer-aided technology from companies like Hologic Inc. and Icad Inc., designed to boost the accuracy of mammograms, failed to find more tumors, according to a study that suggests its widespread use should be curtailed. 

The technology, approved in the U.S. in 1998, is used in 90 percent of mammograms performed each year at a cost of more than $400 million, according to lead researcher Constance Lehman, director of breast imaging and co-director of the Avon Foundation Comprehensive Breast Evaluation Center at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. That should end, she said.