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COVID-19 leads to decrease in breast cancer screenings, mammograms

According to the findings, mammograms declined by 89.2% in April of this year.

A recent study in JCO Clinical Care Informatics found that, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, fewer patients sought cancer-related care this year than last.

The study analyzed patient encounter data via TriNetX, a global health research network of real-world evidence, and sought to measure the effects of COVID-19 on normal cancer care activities and screening efforts1.

Investigators from the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center – Jefferson Health (SKCC) analyzed the differences in patient encounters from January to April 2019 and compared it with the same months in 20201.

According to the findings, mammograms declined by 89.2% in April of this year. Although researchers found a substantial decrease in patient encounters across all cancer types, breast cancer-related encounters declined by 47.7%1.

These results suggest that ob/gyns may be faced with increased rates in the presentation of later-stage cancers in the coming months.

For more details and additional coverage, please visit our sister publication at Drug Topics.

  1. London JW, Fazio-Eynullayeva E, Palchuk MB, Sankey P, McNair C. Effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on cancer-related patient encounters. JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics. 2020. Doi: 10.1200/CCI.20.00068