Evid Based Nurs 7:15 doi:10.1136/ebn.7.1.15
  • Treatment

Review: limited evidence on regular breast examination does not support its effectiveness for reducing breast cancer deaths

 Q Does screening for breast cancer by regular breast self examination (BSE) reduce the incidence of breast cancer and death?


GraphicData sources:

Medline and the Cochrane Library (October 2002), reference lists, and the specialised register of the Cochrane Breast Cancer Group.

GraphicStudy selection and assessment:

randomised controlled trials that included women with no diagnosis of breast cancer and evaluated regular BSE or no regular BSE.


mortality from breast cancer, total mortality, cancers identified, and biopsies with benign results.


2 studies (388 535 women) that compared regular BSE with no examination were included. 1 study from St Petersburg, Russia followed women (40–64 y) for 10–15 years. 1 study from Shanghai, China followed women (30–66 y) for 10 years. Results were pooled using a fixed effects model. Breast cancer mortality did …

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