HIQA recommends screening for those at higher risk of breast cancer

The Health watchdog HIQA has recommended a screening programme for women under 50 who are at higher risk of breast cancer due to genetic pre-disposition or family history.

Currently, the Government-funded Breast - Check programme offers free mammograms to women aged between 50 and 64.

However, HIQA said that women under 50 who are at risk of developing breast cancer should be offered MRI scans.

It said the addition of mammograms should be considered for women who are aged between 40 and 50.

HIQA said that screening for younger women who are at higher risk of developing breast cancer could reduce the number of deaths from the disease - as these women have more aggressive tumours - making early detection critical.

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