Purpose: To examine the benefits of mammography for elderly breast cancer survivors in community settings. Methods: Using the 1991-1999 linked SEER-Medicare data, we examined if mammography reduced the risk of breast-cancer-specific and all-cause mortality among women age 66 or older who were diagnosed with first primary breast cancer (FPBC) at stages 0-III and survived at least 30 months. To analyze the influence of mammography (both within one year and within two years prior to death/censoring) on the risk of breast-cancer-specific mortality, we compared women who died of breast cancer (cases) with women who died of other causes or were censored (controls). For an analysis of all-cause mortality, we compared women who died from any cause (cases) with women who were censored (controls). Propensity scores were used to adjust for tumor-related, treatment-related, and sociodemographic confounders. Results: Among 1351 breast cancer deaths (cases) and 5,262 controls, women who had a mammogram during a one or two-year time interval were less likely to die from breast cancer than women who did not have any mammograms during this time period in propensity-score-adjusted analysis (within one year odds ratio [OR]: 0.83, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.72-0.95; within two years OR: 0.80, 95% CI: 0.70-0.92). Similarly, risk of all-cause mortality was reduced among women who had mammograms during one- or two-year intervals. Conclusions: In community settings, mammography use during a one- or two-year time interval was associated with a small-reduced risk of breast-cancer-specific and all-cause mortality among elderly breast cancer survivors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)489-496
Number of pages8
JournalBreast Cancer Research and Treatment
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 2008


  • Breast cancer survivors
  • Effectiveness
  • Elderly
  • Mammography


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