California law now requires that doctors tell women of dense breast tissue

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Women must now be told when screenings show they have dense breast tissue.  

Radiologists across California are now required by law to notify women when their mammography screening shows they have dense breast tissue.

The new law went into effect yesterday.  

About 50 percent of women have dense breast tissue, more fibrograndular tissue than fatty tissue as seen on a mammogram, so falling into this category is normal.

Women whose screenings show dense breast tissue will receive a letter in the mail that includes an explanation that this is a risk factor for developing breast cancer and that having such tissue may make it more difficult to detect a tumor.

However, having dense breast tissue is only a small risk factor for developing breast cancer and mammography is still considered the gold standard in breast cancer screening.

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