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About Breast Screening

Breast screening looks for breast cancer before symptoms show. Finding breast cancer early gives you the best chance of successful treatment and survival.

Breast screening involves taking x-rays of the breast, which are called mammograms.  At least two x-rays of each breast are taken.

Breast screening tests are offered every three years, to women aged from 50 up to their 70th birthday, and who are registered with a doctor.

Women aged 70 and over will not be invited for screening, but can contact Breast Test Wales and ask for an appointment.

People who are transgender or non-binary may need to have breast screening.  To find out more, visit information for people who are transgender and non-binary. 

We do not screen women aged under 50 as the breast screening programme has only been shown to be of benefit for women over 50.  If you have symptoms, or are worried about your family history, you should speak to your doctor.


About breast cancer

Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to grow and build up to form a lump.  This is also known as a tumour.  As the cancer grows, cells can spread to other parts of the body.  This can be life-threatening.

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in the UK, affecting one in seven women at some time in their lives. 

The risk of getting breast cancer gets higher as you get older. About 4 out of 5 breast cancers are found in women over 50 years old. 

Through finding cancer early and better treatments, people affected by cancer are living longer.

Find out about signs and symptoms.

Read more information about Breast Cancer on NHS UK.

Why is breast screening important?

Taking part in breast screening when you are invited is something that you can do to look after your health.

Screening is important because it can find:

  • cancers when they are too small to see or feel
  • and treat cancer early, giving you the best chance of survival



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