Gov. Tom Corbett has signed into law a measure intended to give women in Pennsylvania more information about their screenings for breast cancer.
It requires that women who have mammograms be notified if they have “high breast density.”
Dense breast tissue is common, especially among younger women, but it makes it harder to detect breast cancer.
The required notice will encourage women to get more information, said Carrie DeLone, Pennsylvania’s physician general.
“Your mammogram might not be all that you need to diagnose your breast cancer,” she said. “You need to talk with your doctor, you need to decide whether you need further testing, that is what this bill is for.”
Obstetricians and gynecologists worried such notices could unnecessarily alarm women, so they lobbied to make the required notification more explanatory.
The recommended language was included in the final bill, said bill sponsor Sen. Bob Mensch, R-Montgomery.
“That’s why the bill went back and forth several times, with changing of the wording for the notification,” he said.
The law will go into effect in about three months.