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Is it a woman’s right to know she has a condition that could mask breast cancer?

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

San Jose Mercury News

For seven straight years since turning 40, Amy Colton religiously scheduled a mammogram. Every year, the test showed nothing.

Two years ago, however, the registered nurse was shocked to discover she was in the latter stages of breast cancer. Then she learned that her radiologist and primary-care physician knew she had a condition that blocks the detection of cancer cells in mammograms—but they never told her.

Now she’s even more shocked that California’s powerful medical lobby is trying to block legislation that would require physicians to tell women if they have the condition, known as “extremely dense breast tissue.”

“I’m the patient; it’s my body. But I was never informed,” said Colton, who lives in Soquel. “It just took my breath away.”

Colton took her complaint to Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, who introduced SB 173, which would require doctors to tell women if they have the condition.

View the full story (San Jose Mercury News)