“Why did last week’s mammography study get so much news, but the DCIS study didn’t?” by Gary Schwitzer, Health News Review.

Health News Review editor Gary Schwitzer argues that journalists were handed a wonderful opportunity to educate readers about one important part of the dilemma in breast cancer screening recommendations, but most of them blew the chance.

Schwitzer outlines two unrelated papers that were published in two different journals — a special report in the New England Journal of Medicine, “Breast-Cancer Screening — Viewpoint of the IARC Working Group and a paper in JAMA Surgery, “Survival Benefit of Breast Surgery for Low-Grade Ductal Carcinoma In Situ.” While the work behind the papers was unrelated – different research teams with a different focus – the topics of the two were inseparable. Yet, only one received widespread mainstream news media attention. You guessed it: the mammography study.

Is it because the mammography study allowed journalists to light another match under the health care controversy they find so easy to fire up, while the DCIS study presented an issue they don’t know about or don’t understand? Schwitzer thinks so.

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