Purpose—To assess breast cancer screening utilization in Medicare beneficiaries with colorectal and lung cancer versus cancer-free controls.

Methods—Female fee-for-service Medicare beneficiaries who were ≥ 67 years old and diagnosed with lung or colorectal cancer between 2000 and 2011 and who reported to a Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) registry (case group) were followed for 2 years after their diagnoses, unless death, a diagnosis of breast cancer, or the end of 2013 came first. A similar number of cancer-free controls were individually matched to cases by age, race, registry region, and follow-up time. Screening utilization was defined as the percentage of women with ≥1 screening mammogram during follow-up.

Results—Overall, 104,164 cases (48% colorectal, 52% lung; 30% advanced cancer) and 104,164 controls were included. Among women with lung or colorectal cancer, 22% underwent ≥ 1 screening mammogram versus 26% of controls (odds ratio [OR] 0.80; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.78–0.82). Stratified by cancer type, 28% of colorectal cancer cases versus 29% of controls (OR 0.98; 95% CI 0.95–1.01) and 17% of lung cancer cases versus 23% of controls (OR 0.63; 95% CI 0.60–0.65) received ≥ 1 mammogram. When stratified by stage, 8% with advanced cancer versus 18% of controls (OR 0.33; 95% CI 0.31–0.35) and 30% with early-stage cancer versus 30% of controls (OR 1; 95% CI 0.97–1.02) underwent ≥ 1 mammogram.

Conclusion—Screening mammography utilization rates are similar between Medicare beneficiaries with early-stage cancer versus controls. Although the majority of patients with advanced-stage cancer appropriately do not pursue screening mammography, a small number (8%) continue with screening.

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Published in Journal of the American College of Radiology, v. 14, issue 7, p. 900-910.

© 2017 American College of Radiology

This manuscript version is made available under the CC‐BY‐NC‐ND 4.0 license https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.

The document available for download is the author's post-peer-review final draft of the article.

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Funding Information

Research reported in this publication was supported by the Radiological Society of North America Research and Education Foundation under award number RR1553. Furthermore, this research was supported in part by the Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Shared Resource of Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University and National Institutes of Health/National Cancer Institute under award number P30CA138292.