Breast screening

About

Breast screening helps healthcare professionals to detect breast cancer at an early stage, which in turn improves the chances of survival. The NHS breast screening programme currently invites women aged between 50 and 70, who are registered with a GP, for a mammogram (x-ray of the breasts) once every three years. If you are eligible you will receive your first invite to attend screening at some point between your 50th and 53rd birthday. The service is currently taking part in national research trial and some women aged 47 to 49 and 71 to 73 are also being invited.

We screen women registered with GPs located in the following areas:

  • Westminster
  • Kensington and Chelsea
  • Hammersmith and Fulham
  • Ealing
  • Hillingdon
  • Hounslow

Screening programme

The NHS breast screening programme uses an x-ray test called a mammogram to check the breast for signs of cancer. Breast screening is a way of detecting breast cancer early, when it is too small for you or your doctor to feel. Early detection of breast cancer often means simpler and more successful treatment.

Clinical trials and research

A research study is currently taking place across England that is looking at the potential risks and benefits of extending breast screening to women who are slightly younger or older than the current age group.

In the area where you live, half of the women aged 47 to 49 and half of the women aged 71 to 73 are being randomly selected and invited for screening. This will enable researchers to compare over the following years, for each separate age range, those women invited for screening and those women in the groups not invited for screening.

Any women who accepts the invitation will be screened in the normal way. Women in these age groups that are not invited can ask to be screened. For more information visit cancerscreening.nhs.uk.